Royal honour for Essex university department of government

A university politics department founded less than 50 years ago has been awarded a Regius professorship by the Queen to mark her Diamond Jubilee.

The University of Essex Department of Government received the accolade and will appoint a title holder later.

Regius professorships are traditionally given to the older universities in the British Isles and only two were awarded in the past century.

Essex vice-chancellor Prof Anthony Forster said it was a great honour.

"Our department has been at the forefront of research and education for half a century," he said.

The Speaker of the House of Commons John Bercow MP is a politics graduate of the university and said: "I spent an immensely stimulating and enjoyable three years at Essex, learning from and interacting with an outstanding team of lecturers in the Department of Government.

"It is a fantastic and well-deserved achievement that in less than 50 years Essex has established such an enviable international reputation in political science and I warmly congratulate the university on the award of the Regius professorship."

The Queen gave the professorships to 12 universities to mark her Diamond Jubilee.

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