The City Council has officially installed Sir David Greenaway as an Honorary Freeman of the City in recognition of the huge contribution he has made to Nottingham.

The decision was taken at a special meeting of the council on November 13, and saw Sir David become the 39th Honorary Freeman of the City, joining Rev William Booth, Brian Clough and Sir Paul Smith for the special title bestowed on those who have given ‘eminent service’ to Nottingham.

Sir David has recently retired from his role as Vice Chancellor of the University of Nottingham, where he was instrumental in opening up Nottingham’s relationships with China, Malaysia and India.

He also led the development of the Jubilee campus and other sites in Nottingham with recent investment of over £0.5bn in buildings and other infrastructure – creating new standards of architectural excellence and regenerating historical brownfield sites.

He has used his national profile and contacts to advocate on behalf of Nottingham, including in his role as chair of the Russell Group of Universities, and of CASE Europe and as a member of the National Centre for Universities and Business Leadership Council.

He was key to establishing and developing the City’s Economic Resilience Board which was set up in response to the economic recession. His contribution to this group helped to future proof the economic stability of the City, and led onto the production of the Growth Plan in 2010.

As Chair of the City’s Education Improvement Board, Sir David has demonstrated the impact of drawing on his family history, his personal belief in the transformational power of education, and his exceptional professional knowledge and skills. Both Sir David and his wife Susan are totally committed to the city. They sent their children to state schools and have contributed to a range of community and charitable ventures.

City Council Leader, Councillor Jon Collins, said: “Sir David’s contribution and commitment to Nottingham make him a worthy recipient of the Freeman of the City title. As well as playing a key role in forging connections between Nottingham and other parts of the world, he has helped to steer Nottingham through turbulent economic waters and shaped some significant developments in the city.

“He has also been unstinting in his belief that improving life chances for Nottingham’s children, young people and families can best be achieved through ensuring access to the highest quality education. He has taken an active role in charitable work, raising significant funds for stroke and cancer charities.”

Sir David commented: “This is a deeply meaningful honour, and I am both thrilled and humbled to be recognised in this way. The vitality of our City and its future development is very close to my heart and I will continue to support the many initiatives in place to help make it an ever more supportive and attractive place to be, and to ensure the world knows what a great City we have, and what great people we have.”

Photo courtesy of Nottingham Post