Video: Lord of the Rings star among successful former University of East Anglia students who will receive honorary degrees

PUBLISHED: 12:23 21 May 2013 | UPDATED: 16:20 21 May 2013

Actor John Rhys-Davies will receive an honorary degree from the University of East Anglia. Photo: PA Photo/Emptage Hallet.

Actor John Rhys-Davies will receive an honorary degree from the University of East Anglia. Photo: PA Photo/Emptage Hallet.

Lord of the Rings star John Rhys-Davies has been announced as one of 17 former University of East Anglia students set to receive an honorary degree.

The Welsh actor played Gimli the dwarf in the hugely successful film trilogy of J.R.R. Tolkien’s books and is now set to join a new ‘fellowship’ to mark the UEA’s 50th anniversary.

He will be joined by 16 other well-known former UEA students in being honoured at graduation ceremonies this year, between July 16 and 19.

The 69-year-old will be joined by the likes of Pirates of the Caribbean and Coupling actor Jack Davenport and Bend it Like Beckham director Gurinder Chadha in receiving the honorary degrees.

Brian Summers, UEA registrar and secretary, said: “Each year we present honorary degrees to those who have made outstanding contributions in the arts, science, sport and civil society.

“To celebrate this significant year in the university’s history, we have chosen to recognise distinguished individuals who have studied at UEA in the past and we’re delighted that they will join our graduation ceremonies in the summer.”

Also receiving the honorary degrees are BBC News journalist Razia Iqbal, art expert and broadcaster Philip Mould, US-born novelist Tracy Chevalier and co-founder of restaurant chain Cafe Rouge, Karen Jones.

They are joined by former chairman and chief executive of Jaguar Land Rover Joe Greenwell, award-winning film, television and theatre producer and executive Colin Callender and managing director of New York investment management company BlackRock, Nigel Hart.

The group is completed by professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School Dennis Brown, former director of the Museum of London Prof Jack Lohman, head of employment rights at trade union law firm Thompsons Solicitors Victoria Phillips, former publisher and literary agent Martin Pick, financial experts Ayaz Ebrahim and Mark Williams and mathematician Dr David Acheson.

- Watch a fan video of Mr Rhys-Davies’ best moments as Gimli the dwarf throughout the Lord of the Rings trilogy in the video above.

- For more about the former UEA students, see tomorrow’s Eastern Daily Press and Norwich Evening News.

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