November 14, 2015

John Cleese turned down knightood but accepted a lemur species being named after him

Express, UK- The comic actor returned to Bristol Zoo Gardens to discuss conservation, his childhood in the West Country and three fund-raising performances to be held within the grounds of the zoo.

Cleese, who went to school at Clifton College, near Bristol Zoo Gardens, visited the zoo as a boy and fell in love with lemurs at an early age.

Cleese has been back to visit the zoo on several occasions and has championed lemur conservation for many years. As a result of his campaigning work, a new species of woolly lemur was named after him - Avahi cleesei.

Speaking at the zoo, Cleese - who declined a CBE in 1996 - said having the species named after him was a higher honour than a knighthood.

He said: "Well, I've had a species named after me. A Swiss guy discovered it. He called and asked if I will give him permission to name it after me.

"I would rather have that than a knighthood or peerage."

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

A CBE isn't a knighthood. The grades are

GBE - Knight/Dame Grand Cross of the Order of the British Empire
KBE/DBE - Knight/Dame Commander of etc.
CBE - Commander
OBE - Officer
MBE - Member