Ilford principal meets the Queen at Commonwealth Diaspora Reception in Buckingham Palace

PUBLISHED: 13:00 19 February 2018 | UPDATED: 13:27 19 February 2018

Dr Bilal Sheikh of Mont Rose College attends the Queen's Commonwealth diaspora reception at Buckingham Palace. Photo: Mont Rose College

Dr Bilal Sheikh of Mont Rose College attends the Queen's Commonwealth diaspora reception at Buckingham Palace. Photo: Mont Rose College


An Ilford college principal was recognised by the Queen for his positive contribution as a commonwealth citizen.

Dr Bilal Sheikh, of Mont Rose College of Management and Sciences, Cranbrook Road, Ilford, met the Queen at the Commonwealth Diaspora Reception at Buckingham Palace on February 14.

Among more than 200 guests, he represented both Redbridge, where he has lived and worked for more than 18 years, and his country of origin – Pakistan.

Dr Sheikh has been the principal of the college for 12 years.

“I am still in shock, I was not expecting I would be shaking hands with the Queen,” he said.

Dr Sheikh was selected by Deputy Lord Lieutenant Thomas Chan to attend the event alongside other dignitaries including prime minister Theresa May, Prince Charles and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall,

Pakistan is one of 53 member states in the Commonwealth - the former territories of the British Empire.

Commenting on why he felt he had been selected, he said: “I think it’s because of our college’s achievements.”

He added: “And after Brexit, [the UK] wants closer co-ordination with the Commonwealth countries.”

Last year, Mont Rose College was commended in its Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education (QAA), and was deemed to meet UK expectations in its maintenance of academic standards, and the quality of student learning opportunities among other areas.

Last year, only 6pc of colleges assessed by QAA received this rating.

Commenting on the positive rating, Dr Sheikh added: “We are very delighted to receive such an exceptional review from QAA, which demonstrates our continuous improvement in our infrastructure and commitment to provide an excellent education to communities around us.”

The college also donated £975 to Haven House Hospice, in Woodford Green, at the Mayor of Redbridge’s charity dinner held at Bancroft’s School, Woodford Green last week.

The Commonwealth is home to more than 2.4 billion citizens across the world.

Prince Harry has been offered an official role in the organisation, the Sunday Times revealed.

This move comes amid speculation that Commonwealth leaders have met in secret to consider whether Prince Charles should take over as the head of the organisation after the Queen dies.

Latest Ilford Stories

23 minutes ago

The latest news from the Thomas McCurtains GAA club

The Tottenham Hotspur defender praised the leadership skills of his club team-mate and discussed the firepower in the England squad


They’ve kept 194 clean sheets for their country between them but which one of these five shot stoppers is England’s greatest goalkeeper of all time?


West Ham United capture the signing of Polish goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski for an undisclosed fee from Swansea City.


A coroner has criticised an NHS Trust and GP surgery after a woman fell to her death from The Exchange shopping centre car park.


Whether you like to dabble once and a while, or you are a pro with the paintbrush, your borough needs you.


Jamie Porter has been studying the Specsavers County Championship form with the eye of an optimist as Essex approach the halfway point in their title defence.


Redbridge residents can now use the first walk-in clinic in England which offerers cervical screening tests to women who have experienced female genital mutilation (FGM).


An Ilford shoe retailer and podiatry practice is taking the next step with a move to a new shop just a few doors down.

Redbridge estate agents Sandra Davidson answer the common questions homeowners have when it comes to selling their home, and reveals how you can make sure the sale is stress-free

Redbridge Estate agents Sandra Davidson’s hassle-free service guarantees rental income for your property, whether it is occupied or not. Here they share details of the Guaranteed Rent Scheme and how it can help you avoid the regular stresses associated with managing a let.

Newsletter Sign Up

Ilford Recorder twice-weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read news

Show Job Lists


Having a brand new kitchen is something that lots of people want but can only dream of. Sadly keeping up to date and making our living spaces as nice as they can be is a costly and incredibly stressful business. Even a fresh coat of paint makes all the difference but isn’t easy or quick.

Who wouldn’t love the chance to go on a shopping spree. Imagine being able to walk into a shop and choose whatever your heart desires without having to worry about how much it costs.

Digital Edition


Enjoy the
Ilford Recorder
e-edition today


Education and Training


Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now