Emma Thompson made sure to make a statement as she collected her damehood at Buckingham Palace on Wednesday afternoon.
The new Dame was given her title in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list for her services to drama, and attended her investiture ceremony in a bright blue Stella McCartney suit and a pair of white trainers.
On her blazer, she also sported a Fawcett Society badge in support of equal pay, as well as a remembrance poppy.
After the ceremony, presided over by Prince William, Emma told reporters that, as a “card-carrying feminist” and “human rights activist”, she hoped to highlight the fact that as many as three million children in Britain will go hungry during the school holidays this year.
On the same day, fellow actress Sarah Gordy made history as the first woman with Down’s syndrome to receive an MBE for services to both the arts and people with disabilities.
She said: “I’d like to inspire others and empower others to believe in themselves, especially people with Down’s syndrome.”
Sarah’s most recent credits include roles in ‘Call The Midwife’ and ‘Holby City’, while she also served as a celebrity ambassador for the charity Mencap, which aims to help people with disabilities.
After receiving her damehood, Emma said it was “lovely” to be recognised, particularly as the ceremony was led by Prince William, of whom she said: “I’ve known him since he was little and we just sniggered at each other.”
The Oscar-winning actress has spoken passionately about issues relating to gender equality in the past, revealing earlier this year she was “always paid less” than her male counterparts, and calling for actors’ pays to be published, to discourage this from continuing.
She told Good Housekeeping: “It’s a forensic way of looking at how women are second class citizens and I really appreciate that because it’s not emotional.
“This is the fact: this person does the same work for less money, and that’s just wrong.”