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In the business world, British Airways chairman Martin Broughton was named a knight, despite a difficult year for the airline that saw customers inconvenienced in the thousands by a series of cabin crew strikes, the Icelandic volcanic ash cloud and the snow-induced closure of Heathrow Airport.

Broughton set off a flap about aviation security in October when he accused the U.S. of demanding “completely redundant” security checks at airports, such as removing shoes and separate examinations of laptop computers.

Roger Carr, chairman of energy company Centrica PLC, also was made a knight. Carr stepped down as chairman of Cadbury PLC earlier this year following the chocolate-maker’s hostile takeover by U.S. food conglomerate Kraft Inc.

There were honors for politicians for the first time since an expenses scandal last year outraged voters and sullied Parliament’s reputation. Peter Bottomley, a Conservative lawmaker since 1975, was made a knight “for public service.” Labour legislator Ann Begg, the first full-time wheelchair user elected to Parliament, was made a dame for services to disabled people and equal opportunities.

Among the hundreds of names are people little known outside their communities or specialist fields. They include Eric Sutherns, the bridge master responsible for raising and lowering the arms of London’s iconic Tower Bridge, and apiarist Anne Buckingham, awarded an MBE “for services to beekeeping in Surrey.”