Chairman receives OBE at Buckingham Palace

Club chairman Douglas Rae recently attended Buckingham Palace to receive the OBE bestowed upon him in the Queen’s 2016 birthday honours list.

Golden Casket owner Mr Rae was announced as a recipient in June and attended her majesty’s London residence on Tuesday 11 October to receive his investiture from Prince William.

The 85-year-old was accompanied at the prestigious ceremony by wife Adrienne Rae, son Crawford Rae and daughter Gillian Finch.

Mr Rae said he was honoured to receive the award at a great day for his family that they will always remember.

He said: “Prince William asked how Morton were doing, and I told him we were in the Scottish League Cup semi-final and he said he would look out for the score.

“I broke the ice by talking about his children and Prince George waving both hands at the same time. It was a very relaxed and enjoyable chat.

“Everything went like absolute clockwork. They had a lovely orchestra playing beautiful music, everyone was very friendly and could not have been more co-operative. We were all delighted to be there.”

Proud Crawford added: “My father, mother, sister and I attended Buckingham Palace on Tuesday 11 October to see the chairman awarded an Order of the British Empire.

“We met a great deal of very worthwhile and impressive recipients while at the palace. Rod Stewart, for example, was knighted on that particular day and I had a brief chat with him with us Scots being in a minority, and we indulged in some general football chat.

“I suggested that I looked forward to seeing him at the Betfred Cup final in November, alas it wasn’t to be despite our boys great efforts against Aberdeen on Saturday. We also met a number of very nice people deserving of their awards.”

In terms of the procedure, Crawford explained: “Each recipient stood in front of Prince William and was given approximately 10 seconds of chat. The chairman had a very much extended period with the Prince, who was in absolute hysterics at their discussions.

“The chairman had his hands up waving like Al Jolson, and I was certainly getting rather concerned with what was going on. It turned out that the chairman told the Prince that he was so impressed young George’s mastery of the way he managed the crowds at such an early age.

“But he found the most impressive skill was his waving, in that he had managed to perfect waving to both left and right-hand sides simultaneously during their recent Canadian tour and Prince William’s face was creased with laughter.”


Club director Warren Hawke extended his congratulations by saying: “Not only as a major local employer in Inverclyde, I have seen first hand the time and effort he has invested in his beloved Greenock Morton Football Club.

“I’m delighted for the chairman to be recognised at such a level. This is an award that recognises his tireless commitment to business as a major employer in the Inverclyde area and his beloved Greenock Morton Football Club, and, without a doubt, this is fully deserved.”

Manager Jim Duffy feels it was due recognition for his impact on Inverclyde, both through his confectionery company and the area’s senior football club.

He added: “It’s a fantastic award. To get an OBE is a fantastic tribute to what he has achieved as a local businessman starting up the very successful company he has.

“His commitment to Greenock, in particular, through the football club and the business and the various other aspects of being involved in the Inverclyde area, is fantastic.

“I’m sure to receive something like that will rank alongside some of the proudest moments in his life. I’d like to congratulate him and say ‘well done’.”