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The Royal W: Gentleman Usher of the Purple Rod

We began with Black Rod, then briefly took a look at Blue Rod, but did you know there is also Purple Rod?

Established in 1917 and becoming effective in 1918, Purple Rod is the Usher to the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire.

The Most Excellent Order of the British Empire shortened to “Order of the British Empire” was established by King George on 4 June 1917 V. It includes five classes in civil and military divisions: Knights and Dames Grand Cross (GBE), Knights and Dames Commanders (KBE and DBE), Commanders (CBE), Officers (OBE) and Members (MBE).

The Order is not to be confused with the British Empire Medal, whose recipients are associated with, but not members of the Order.

Like Blue Rod, The Gentleman Usher of the Purple Rod carries out ceremonial and administrative duties for the Crown.

Purple Rod’s title derived from the original colour of the Order. It was changed to the present rose-pink in 1937.

Following the Dean, The Gentleman Usher of the Purple Rod ranks sixth among the brother officialism.

The present office holder is Dame Amelia Chilcott Fawcett DBE, who was was appointed the first Lady Usher of the Purple Rod in 2013.

Dame Amelia was a member of the Court of Directors of the Bank of England from June 2004 to 2009. She was awarded a CBE in 2002 and a DBE in 2010.

Dame Amelia was born in Boston, Massachusetts and is a British and American citizen.

Featured Photo Credit: UK Ministry of Defence via photopin cc

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