Quentin Blake, the illustrator whose wiry, sprightly figures have brought to life the prose of writers from Roald Dahl to Michael Rosen, leads an eclectic roll call of figures from the arts in the New Year Honours.
The 80-year-old artist is knighted for his work with hospitals and a forthcoming museum of illustration. He said yesterday that the knighthood would help him to clear up confusion on the Continent, where many of his fans assume he is already "Sir Quentin".
He is joined by Kate Bush, the singer revered for such tracks as "Wuthering Heights", who is created CBE. The 54-year-old musician, who is renowned for taking long periods to perfect her material, said the honour was a "great surprise".
The artist Tracy Emin is also appointed CBE, while the fashion designer Stella McCartney, who created Team GB's kit for the London Olympics and Paralympics, is made OBE.
The comedy writer Jeremy Lloyd, 82, who devised such enduring classics of Saturday evening television as 'Allo 'Allo and Are You Being Served?, said he was "astounded" to be appointed OBE. Arlene Philips, the former Strictly Come Dancing judge, is created CBE to add to her OBE.