The Central School of Speech and Drama has been awarded royal status by the Queen.
As part of her Diamond Jubilee year, the monarch has honoured the training centre by re-naming it the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama.
The institution has been recognised for its reputation of “exceptional professional training in theatre and performance studies” which is “as distinctive in its field as both a high-level conservatoire and a research-active university college”.
Gavin Henderson, principal of the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, said: “2012 has been a landmark year for Central, not only for the large number of students and alumni who used their skills and training to contribute to the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, but now we have been honoured with a royal title in the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee year.”
Judi Dench, who is a former president and alumna of the school, said: “My association with Central goes back a very long way. I followed my brother there when it was housed at the Royal Albert Hall, and my daughter followed me after it was relocated to the Embassy Theatre, so we have a strong family connection and joint interest in seeing the school elevated in this year.”
She added: “Central is one of the top drama schools in the country and it stands at the heart of training and research for our great British theatre.”