Scottish Daily Mail

Kung who? MBE handed to unknown martial arts ‘professor’

- By Guy Walters and Inderdeep Bains

HAVING just been awarded an MBE for services to martial arts you would think Alan Thornton would be the toast of his fellow karate experts.

But yesterday leading figures in British martial arts were instead perplexed by the gong for a man they have never heard of.

The award in the Queen’s birthday honours list was given to a ‘Professor Alan Stanley Thornton’ who describes himself as a 10th Dan Red Belt in a form of karate called ‘Senai Seisshinry­u Shihandoka­i’. However, last night former karate champions said they had heard of neither Mr Thornton nor his branch of their sport.

‘I have no idea who he is,’ said David ‘Ticky’ Donovan, who was awarded an OBE for coaching the English and British karate teams for more than 20 years. ‘If he’s a 10th Dan, then I certainly would have heard of him.’

Investigat­ions by the Daily Mail yesterday revealed that Mr Thornton, 53, who lives in Brentford, West London, is a man who claims to hold many distinctio­ns.

Although he styles himself as a professor – and the award of the MBE uses that form of address – Mr Thornton last night claimed it was not an academic title but awarded by a Japanese martial arts organisati­on called ‘Juko-kai’.

Mr Thornton claims to hold a BSc and a doctorate in ‘naturopath­ic studies’. Asked where he obtained these degrees, he said they were from the ‘Institute of Natural Therapy’ in India.

A Cabinet Office spokesman said: ‘The nomination for Professor Alan Stanley Thornton, like any other, was considered on merit by the relevant independen­t committee.’

 ??  ?? Claims: Alan Thornton
Claims: Alan Thornton

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