Albion boss to receive honorary doctorate from Brighton University

Tony Bloom, chairman of Brighton and Hove Albion Football Club
Tony Bloom, chairman of Brighton and Hove Albion Football Club

A football club chairman will be honoured by the University of Brighton alongside rapper, poet and activist Akala and wildlife conservationist Lynne McTavish

Tony Bloom, the boss of Brighton and Hove Albion, will be made and Honorary Doctor of Science by the University of Brighton during summer graduation ceremonies next week (July 31 to August 3).

Rapper, poet and activist Akala

Rapper, poet and activist Akala

The university said the award is in recognition of Mr Bloom’s ‘impact on the community and major contribution to business in the city of Brighton and Hove’.

It said Mr Bloom’s investment in the Albion enabled the club to develop a new stadium at Falmer and a state-of-the-art training centre in Lancing.

His ownership of the club also saw Albion’s promotion to the Premier League in 2017, which has brought major economic benefits to the city and surrounding area.

Mr Bloom is also chair of the Bloom Foundation, his family charitable foundation which supports community and educational initiatives in the Brighton area, and he is also a trustee of the charity Overcoming Multiple Sclerosis.

Lynne McTavish will be made an Honorary Doctor of Science in recognition of her major contribution to wildlife conservation

Lynne McTavish will be made an Honorary Doctor of Science in recognition of her major contribution to wildlife conservation

Also receiving an award will be Akala, the rapper, poet, and political activist. He will be made an Honorary Doctor of Arts in recognition of his major contribution to empowering young people through learning.

Akala is a BAFTA and MOBO award-winning hip-hop artist, writer, social entrepreneur and co-founder of The Hip-Hop Shakespeare Company. Appearing at festivals all over the world, he is more recently known for his lectures and journalism.

Lynne McTavish will be made an Honorary Doctor of Science in recognition of her major contribution to wildlife conservation in South Africa and promotion of conservation science at the highest level.

In 2000, Lynne McTavish joined Mankwe Wildlife Reserve, established by her father Dougal, and increased the reserve’s capacity through grassland management. Mankwe is now home to 380 species of birds, 30 species of reptiles, and 51 species of large mammals, including buffalo, sable, leopard and endangered white rhino.

More than 4,500 University of Brighton students will receive their degrees during the four days of awards ceremonies starting on Tuesday, July 31, at the Brighton Centre.

The graduands, ranging in age from 19 to 72, and from around 90 countries, will be presented with their awards by Professor Debra Humphris, the University’s vice-chancellor.

Professor Humphris said: “The University always takes enormous pride and pleasure in acknowledging the successes of our graduates and our alumni. We know the important part that families, friends and supporters have played in their success and would like to thank them all for their fantastic help and assistance given during their studies.

“Every single award has been achieved through hard work and application and in some cases at considerable personal sacrifice. I’m sure our extremely talented graduates will make significant contributions to their communities and to society as a whole. They embody the vital role universities play in our society.”