Staff news

Freedom of the City: Peter Higgs

Peter Higgs, Emeritus Professor of Theoretical Physics, has been awarded the Freedom of the City of Newcastle.

Peter Higgs

The honour recognises his work and contribution to theoretical physics.

Professor Higgs was born in Elswick in Newcastle in 1929 and spent his early life in the city.

In late 2013 he also received the Freedom of the City of Edinburgh. He has worked in the Scottish capital for more than 50 years.

The honorary title is given to individuals who have distinguished themselves through their work, or to recognise the esteem in which they are held by the people of the city.

The civic accolades follow the announcement last October that Professor Higgs had won a Nobel Prize in Physics, in recognition of his outstanding contribution to the theoretical work that led to the prediction of the Higgs boson particle.

Professor Higgs, has been the recipient of many other prestigious awards, including the Edinburgh Award, in 2011.

In the 2013 New Year Honours List he was appointed a Companion of Honour.

He has received honorary degrees from 11 UK universities, including Edinburgh, Swansea, Cambridge, St Andrews and Manchester.

Professor Higgs is only the seventh living person to have been given the Freedom of the City of Edinburgh. Other living recipients include Sir Chris Hoy, Sir Sean Connery and Aung San Suu Kyi.

Photograph of Peter Higgs courtesy Maverick Photo Agency