The world’s leading centre for the study of Robert Burns is being recognised at Buckingham Palace today with the highest national honour in further and higher education.

The Queen’s Anniversary Prizes celebrate excellence, innovation and public benefit in work carried out by UK colleges and universities.

Her Majesty The Queen will present the prize to the University of Glasgow in recognition of the scholarship, range and impact of projects undertaken at their Centre for Robert Burns Studies.

Prizes are the highest national honour awarded in UK further and higher education and are granted every two years. They are run by the Royal Anniversary Trust, an independent charity.

Academics from the Centre for Robert Burns Studies said: “It is wonderful to see the importance and impact of the centre's scholarship recognised.

"It means a great deal to us that our interdisciplinary work to research and sustain the educational, cultural and economic value of Burns’s phenomenal legacy has been awarded this very great honour.

"The Queen’s Anniversary Prize also emphasises Glasgow’s standing as a university at the forefront of the study of Scottish Literature and Culture.”

Professor Sir Anton Muscatelli, Principal and Vice-Chancellor of the university said: "The Centre for Robert Burns Studies is home to exceptional scholars who have rewritten our understanding and knowledge of Scotland’s national bard.

"I know they will continue their exceptional scholarship to better understand Scotland’s greatest poet and song writer.

“The university is delighted to have the efforts of its Burns scholars recognised and this wonderful news means that the University of Glasgow now has six Queen’s Anniversary Prizes and has been successful in four of the past six rounds of the prizes.

"I am proud of - and grateful to - everyone across the University who has played a part in this success.”

Born in 1759 in Alloway, Robert Burns is one of the world’s most celebrated poets.

His poems and songs have been translated into every major language including Russian, German, French and Chinese.

Burns’s influence has extended far beyond Scotland with some 9.5 million people worldwide estimated to attend Burns Suppers annually.

Burns’s version of ‘Auld Lang Syne’ – the New Year anthem - has been performed by everyone from Elvis Presley to Jimi Hendrix.

In January 2020, a report by the Centre for Robert Burns Studies revealed Scotland’s national bard is worth just over £200 million a year to the Scottish economy and the poet’s brand is worth nearly £140 million annually.