Sir Ian Wrigglesworth and Harry Pearson  have received honorary degrees  from Teesside University. Also on the list of past recipients is Paul Rogers of the pop group Free.

Sir Ian from Stockton was an MP from 1974 to 1981 received a Doctor of Business Administration and Harry Pearson a writer and leading figure in North East politics received a Doctor of Letters.


Harry, who grew up in Middlesbrough but now lives near Hexham in Northumberland, is to become a Doctor of Letters.

Best known for his book about North East football, The Far Corner, Harry has also written about cricket, rural life and the North East. His latest book has recently been serialised in The Journal.

He said: “I am very pleased and surprised to be receiving this honorary degree. I’ve never been to university, so it was my only chance of getting a degree!

“I’ve actually had a look through the list of others who have received them. I noticed Paul Rodgers of rock band Free also received one. Everyone else on the list has contributed to society, I’ve just messed around, so it’s nice.”

Sir Ian, who is originally from Stockton and served as an MP on Teesside from 1974 to 1981, will be receiving a Doctor of Business Administration.

After leaving Parliament, Sir Ian held a number of prominent roles including the founder chairman of the Newcastle Gateshead Initiative, chairman of the Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art, deputy chairman of the Regional Growth Fund and chairman of Port of Tyne.

He said: “I am delighted to be receiving this, I am thrilled to bits to have a degree in my home area.

“I was a student in Teesside and worked in Middlesbrough. It is nice to be recognised at home.”

Sir Ian and Harry Pearson were just two of eight people who received honarary degrees.