Teenage paralympic swimmer Eleanor Simmonds has joined the world-famous ranks of Debrett’s.
The 14-year-old from Walsall, who won two gold medals in last year’s Summer Paralympics in Beijing, is believed to be the youngest entrant in Debrett’s People of Today, described as the ultimate guide to movers and shakers in British society.
The specialist publisher, which launched its first edition of Debrett’s Peerage in 1769, publishes a range of modern etiquette publications such as Debrett’s A-Z of Modern Manners, Debrett’s Wedding Guide and Debrett’s Etiquette for Girls.
Eleanor, who won the 2008 BBC Young Sports Personality of the Year award and became the youngest person to be made an MBE following recognition in the 2009 New Year Honours, is joined by other new West Midlands entries to this year’s People of Today. This brings the total number of entrants from the region to 362.
Debrett’s People of Today, which has published all 25,000 of the UK’s most influential and successful names online for the first time, now includes Bromsgrove School headmaster Chris Edwards, architect Ruth Reed, and garden designer and former chair of the Birmingham Royal Ballet Tessa King-Farlow.
Ruth Reed was recently elected the next president of the Royal Institute of British Architects, and will take up her post on September 1.
The Shropshire-born architect is Course Director of the Postgraduate Diploma in Architectural Practice at the Birmingham School of Architecture.
Tessa King-Farlow, who moved to Birmingham in 1967, took up her first job in the city at the Midlands Arts Centre and also studied English Language at the University of Birmingham as a mature student.
In 2001 she became High Sheriff of the West Midlands and has served on the boards of many of Birmingham’s major arts institutions, including chair of Birmingham Royal Ballet from 2005 until March this year.
Chris Edwards has been headmaster of the private Bromsgrove School, where former pupils range from politician Michael Heseltine to actors Ian Carmichael and Trevor Eve, since 2004.
The headmaster of Rugby School in Warwickshire, Patrick Derham, also features among the new entrants.
A spokesman for Debrett’s said it was recognised as the modern authority on all matters of recognition and achievement. The new website would be the essential reference tool for everyone interested in power, wealth, achievement and celebrity in modern Britain.