Scarborough's Nick Thomas awarded MBE by the Queen at Buckingham Palace
Nick Thomas, from Scarborough, the chairman and founder of Qdos Entertainment Group, has been awarded an MBE by the Queen in a ceremony at Buckingham Palace.
Mr Thomas visited the Royal residence for the Investiture ceremony, held in the Ballroom with members of his family to receive his insignia on Thursday November 21.
It was hosted by The Queen and attended by The Queen’s Body Guard of the Yeoman of the Guard.
It was announced in the Queen’s Birthday Honors List in June that Mr Thomas was to be awarded an MBE in recognition of services to the entertainment industry and for his long-time fundraising work and support for numerous charities including Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity, Heroes Welcome and The Royal Variety Charity.
Nick Thomas’ professional career began in 1975 when, at the age of 15 he was a finalist on the ATV Network talent show New Faces with his puppet act ‘Tommer Puppets’.
The act then appeared in shows alongside artistes such as Dick Emery, Mike & Bernie Winters, Cilla Black and Larry Grayson.
In 1982, he began producing pantomimes and summer season shows at theatres across Britain, eventually acquiring a number of rival pantomime companies, before creating Qdos Entertainment Group in 1999.
Qdos Entertainment Group is now one of the largest broad-based entertainment companies in Europe and includes the UK’s second largest regional theatre chain, HQ Theatres & Hospitality Ltd, the artist management company QTalent and the world’s most prolific pantomime production company, Qdos Pantomimes Ltd.
In 2016, Mr Thomas, with long-time collaborator Michael Harrison, returned pantomime to the London Palladium after a 30 year absence.
The Palladium pantomimes have received five Olivier Award Nominations, with the production of Dick Whittington in 2017 winning the award in the Best Entertainment category.
Stars appearing in the Palladium pantomimes have included Dawn French, Elaine Paige, Paul O’Grady, Julian Clary, Gary Wilmot, Diversity and Nigel Havers.
Alongside his work for Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity, Nick has also been associated with The Royal Variety Charity since 1990 and is currently a Vice Chair of the organisation, which arranges the annual televised Royal Variety Performance.
The charity is dedicated to supporting those who have professionally served the entertainment industry, providing residential and nursing care at its own care home Brinsworth House, as well as a nationwide grant scheme for those living in their own homes who may need support.