Actress Barbara Windsor, musician Damon Albarn and academic Professor Susan Price were among those whose honours were announced on 31 December 2015.
Ms Windsor, who starred in EastEnders and the Carry On film series in an acting career spanning seven decades, was made a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire for services to charity and entertainment.
Following publication of the honours list, Ms Windsor said, “I’m so honoured, proud and extremely humbled. I feel so lucky to live in a country I love and have a job I have always adored which has allowed me to be in a position where I’m able to help others.
“For a girl from the East End born into a working-class family and an evacuee during the Second World War, this is truly like a dream—but it’s real.”
It is the second honour Ms Windsor has received in the past 13 months. In November 2014 she was made an honorary Doctor of Arts by UEL in recognition of her glittering stage and screen career – an award she described as one of her proudest achievements.
Joining Ms Windsor is former frontman of Blur and creator of virtual band Gorillaz, Damon Albarn, who received his UEL honorary doctorate in 2006 for services to charity and entertainment. He receives an OBE for services to music.