Katherine Jenkins defends her OBE award
Katherine Jenkins has defended her OBE award.
The 36-year-old soprano – who was handed the prestigious title by Queen Elizabeth in 2014 on account of her services to music and charity – has hit back at David Beckham’s alleged claim that her OBE honour was a "f***ing joke".
In a series of leaked emails, the retired soccer star is alleged to have fumed at the decision to award Katherine the title, saying: "Katherine Jenkins OBE for what? Singing at the rugby and going to see the troops plus taking coke. F***ing joke."
But Katherine’s manager, Professor Jonathan Shalit, has hit back, saying she has done a lot of charitable work during her career, and pointed out that the Welsh star has previously been open about her use of drugs.
He told The Sun newspaper: "Beckham says, ‘Katherine Jenkins OBE for what? Singing at the rugby and going to see the troops plus taking coke. F***ing joke’.
"I say Katherine was awarded an OBE for her services to music and charity.
"With regards to the taking of coke which Katherine has courageously publicly admitted with great honesty – this was when she was in her early 20s still studying, over a decade before she was awarded her OBE and started her recording career."
Professor Shalit also said Katherine has made frequent visits to see British troops in different war zones around the world.
He explained: "She visited troops in Iraq 2005 and 2006, Afghanistan 2007 and 2013, Cyprus 2007 and 2009 and Kosovo in 2009.
"These visits have continued consistently since her OBE was awarded.
"She has made various visits to UK-based regiments and in 2006 became a Trustee of the British Forces Foundation.
"Katherine’s continual participation in charity events have helped raise tens of millions of pounds for important causes."