Leeds Rhinos star Rob Burrow receives MBE for services to rugby and Motor Neurone Disease in Windsor Castle ceremony

Former Leeds Rhinos star Rob Burrow was among a host of high-achievers to receive royal honours at Windsor Castle earlier today.

By Alex Grant
Tuesday, 5th April 2022, 5:21 pm

Rob, 39, who spent 16 years playing for the Leeds Rhinos and was diagnosed with Motor Neurone Disease in 2019, was made an MBE in the 2021 New Year Honours list.

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He picked up the honour earlier today, from Princess Anne, in a ceremony held at Windsor Castle.

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The 39-year-old former player has been made an MBE for services to rugby league and the Motor Neurone Disease (MND) community. Picture: Steve Parsons/PA Wire.

The 39-year-old former player has been made an MBE for services to rugby league and the Motor Neurone Disease (MND) community.

Since the Rob Burrow Centre for Motor Neurone Disease appeal launched in September 2021, £1.87m has been raised, thanks to support from the people of Leeds, the UK and beyond.

The unit, for which around £5m is needed, will see all MND services housed under one roof for the first time.

Patients will have access to a range of holistic support tailored to their needs, from speech and language therapy, to diet and nutrition advice, and physiotherapy.

Leeds Hospitals Charity is the charity of Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust.

It supports Leeds General Infirmary, Leeds Children’s Hospital, Leeds Cancer Centre, St James’s University Hospital, Chapel Allerton Hospital, Seacroft Hospital, Wharfedale Hospital and Leeds Dental Institute.

Rob said: “It is truly humbling to be awarded the MBE and I would like to thank everyone who has made this possible. 2020 has taught us all to appreciate the gifts we have and it is my honour and privilege to accept this award on behalf of all the MND community.”

“It is a great occasion for my family as well. Any excuse to see my wife get dressed up, she deserves to get it for the wonderful support she gives me and our family. I hope that she enjoys the occasion like me."

Sally Light, Chief Executive of the Motor Neurone Disease Association, said: “We are thrilled that Rob has received this well-deserved MBE. Since his diagnosis Rob has inspired thousands of people, both in and out of the ruby league community, to raise money and invaluable awareness of motor neurone disease.

"Rob has selflessly chosen to share his journey with MND with the world which has galvanised people into doing whatever they can to help find a cure for this brutal disease."

Other luminaries of British life attending the event included pop star Engelbert Humperdinck, keyboardist Rick Wakeman and physicist and broadcaster Prof Jim Al-Khalili.

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