A retired Head Teacher of a Catholic College in Bristol and the Choral Director at Clifton Cathedral have been recognised in this year’s Queen’s birthday honours.

Catherine Hughes was awarded an OBE for services to education. Catherine was the longest serving Headteacher when she retired last year after 22 years at St Bede’s Catholic College in Bristol and was acknowledged by the Bishop of Clifton, Declan Lang with a certificate of appreciation in recognition of 29 years of dedicated service to Catholic Education in the Diocese of Clifton. She said she “loved” her time as a teacher and was supportive in the changes in accountability that had been introduced during her career.



Choral Director at Clifton Cathedral, John Gibbons was awarded a BEM for services to music. He is a conductor, composer, arranger, pianist and organist who has been a passionate advocate of neglected British music of the 20th Century and renowned for his support of young soloists at the start of their career.

Bishop Declan praised John by saying ‘I am delighted that John Gibbons has been honoured for his contribution to English music. John is Choral Director at Clifton Cathedral and we are fortunate to have his giftedness and enthusiasm for choral music’.

John combines working with top professional orchestras, most recently with the Liepaja Symphony Orchestra with community groups such as the Ealing Symphony Orchestra and the Northampton Symphony Orchestra.

John spoke with Lucy Tegg on BBC Radio Bristol on Sunday about his career and award. You can hear the interview below: