RPS Honours and Fellowship

Harrison and Hanbury medals in display boxesOur members deserve recognition for their great work in pharmacy. 

That's why we present our RPS awards for achievement and dedication across the profession.

If a pharmacist you know deserves to be recognised and lauded for their work, then nominate them below for an RPS Honour or Fellowship.

We're also linked to the Maplethorpe Fellowship.

The Hanbury Medal

The RPS Hanbury MedalNominations for the 2025 Hanbury Medal open in Spring 2024.

For high excellence in the prosecution or promotion of original research in the Natural History and Chemistry of Drugs.

Awarded in memory of British botanist and pharmacologist Daniel Hanbury, who died in 1875.

Who is eligible?

Nominees for the Hanbury Medal must be:

  • Distinguished pharmacy professionals with a long career involving pharmaceutical research
  • Significant contributors to pharmaceutical science
  • A recognised authority within pharmacy
  • Have had a substantial, positive, and lasting impact on the field
  • Actively encouraging juniors to further their knowledge
  • An RPS member.

How to nominate

Nominations for the 2025 Hanbury Medal open in Spring 2024.

To be considered, nominations must include:

  • A CV on behalf of the nominee
  • A biography detailing their career to date and notable activities within the field of pharmaceutical sciences2
  • A letter of justification expressing why you believe they should be considered for the award
You cannot nominate yourself for the Hanbury Medal.

The winner will be announced in Spring 2025.1

To ensure an inclusive and wide field of candidates is reached we will be reaching out to known stakeholders, including the Academy of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Joint Pharmaceutical Analysis Group and Industrial Pharmacy Forum.

Find out more about the Hanbury Medal.

Any questions about eligibility or nominations? Contact the RPS Science & Research team

1 A dedicated panel created by the RPS’ Science & Research Team and the RPS Science and Research Committee will review the nominations for the medal and select a medal winner. The proposed name is submitted for ratification to the RPS Executive Team, National Pharmacy Board Chairs, and the President.

2 The RPS’ definition of a Pharmaceutical Scientist is “an individual working in the basic, applied or the social sciences impinging on the discovery, development, delivery, quality, safety, efficacy, regulation or usage of medicines and medical devices and their educational development in all its many aspects and for the ultimate benefit of the patient and public.”

The Harrison Medal

The RPS Harrison MedalNominations for the 2024 Harrison Medal are now closed.

The Harrison Medal is awarded for outstanding contributions in advancing pharmaceutical science.

Set up in memory of pharmaceutical chemist Lieutenant-Colonel Edward Frank Harrison, who died in 1918, the Harrison Medal is awarded every two years by the RPS’ Chief Scientist. 

See the list of previous award winners.

Who is eligible?

Nominees for the Harrison Medal must be:

  • Having a substantial, positive, and lasting impact on the field
  • Established in pharmaceutical research and mid-way through their research career
  • Actively advancing the pharmaceutical sciences
  • Actively encouraging juniors and peers to further their knowledge
  • An RPS member.

We encourage nominations from all sectors of the pharmacy profession, as long as the individual is able to meet the listed criteria.

Find out more about the Harrison Medal.

Any questions about eligibility or nominations? Contact the RPS Science & Research team

The Barnett Award

Professor Nina Barnett photoNominations for the first RPS Barnett Award are now open.

For RPS members who have made outstanding contributions to the growth and development of the pharmacy profession.

The award celebrates individuals who have dedicated their careers to supporting, mentoring, and advancing others, and have instilled a culture of professional development excellence within the profession.

Awarded in memory of Professor Nina Barnett, who died in September 2023.

Who is eligible?

Nominees for the Barnett Award must:

  • Demonstrate a passion for supporting the growth and development of pharmacy professionals
  • Demonstrate a substantial positive impact on the growth and development of pharmacy professionals
  • Actively support the pharmacy profession with their personal, professional and/or career development
  • Demonstrate a commitment to instilling a culture of support, mentoring and advancement
  • Be committed to their own lifelong learning and professional development.

How to nominate?

To nominate someone for the Barnett Award, email [email protected] with details of your nominee’s:

  • Career to date
  • Notable activities within professional development.

Please also include why you believe they should be considered for the award.

Nominations must not exceed 1,000 words.

RPS OPERA Award logo

Outstanding Pharmacy Early-career Researcher Award

For early-career stage researchers who have made major contributions to high-quality research.

Our Outstanding Pharmacy Early-career Researcher Award (OPERA) was launched in November 2022 by Professor Parastou Donyai, RPS Chief Scientist, with the Pharmaceutical Journal. It celebrates contributions by up-and-coming researchers to the advancement of the science of medicines and clinical pharmacy.

Nominations for the 2023 OPERA Award are now closed.

Any questions about the OPERA award? Contact [email protected]

RPS Charter MedalRPS Charter Medals

For work done by an individual ‘for the Society and the wider profession’ in promoting the interests of pharmacy at an outstanding level.

Charter Medals are only awarded if there is a suitable candidate, and are not presented every year.

Who is eligible?

Any Member or Fellow of the Society is eligible for nomination, except current Board and Assembly members, who have been ineligible for nomination/receipt of the award whilst holding office since March 2020.

A panel consisting of the President, Treasurer and the three National Board Chairs assess all nominations and, with input from the Chief Executive and/or Chair of the Panel of Fellows as appropriate, agree the recipient.

How to nominate

Nominations for RPS Charter Medals can only be made by members of our Pharmacy Boards or Assembly.

Find out more about RPS Charter Medals.

RPS Crest

RPS Fellowship

For RPS members who have attained distinction in their pharmacy career.

Who is eligible?

To become a Fellow, a member must have:

  • Made an outstanding original contribution to the advancement of pharmaceutical knowledge
  • Attained distinction in the science, practice, profession or history of pharmacy
  • Demonstrably have gone above and beyond in their day job.

How to nominate

RPS Fellows are nominated by their peers, and chosen by our distinguished Panel of Fellows. We encourage nominations for pharmacists from all sectors of the profession.

Nominations can be submitted at any time, but our Assembly-appointed Panel of Fellows (which assesses all nominations for new Fellows) meets just twice a year to review nominations.

The next closing date for nominations is Wednesday, 26 April 2023

For more details, or to nominate someone for a Fellowship, visit our RPS Fellows page.

Honorary Fellowships

In 1953, the RPS was authorised to award Honorary Fellowships to individuals through a supplementary Charter.

The first recipient of the Honorary Fellowship was Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, who was given the award by then president E. A. Brocklehurst in May 1955.

Past Honorary Fellowship recipients:

  • 2001 Anne, Princess Royal
  • 1987 Mike Brining
  • 1977 Dr L. G. Goodwin
  • 1976 Mr John Curtis
  • 1975 Lord Zuckerman
  • 1974 Sir John Richardson
  • 1973 Sir Allen Hodgkin
  • 1972 Lord Rosenheim
  • 1971 Professor Robert Burns Woodward
  • 1969 Lord Gardiner
  • 1966 Lord Florey and Mr Lawrence M. Spalton
  • 1962 Lord Cohen and Mr Thomas Reid
  • 1955 Prince Philip

Corporal Daniel Thomas

Daniel Thomas Award

For dedicated service to pharmacy.

The Daniel Thomas Award recognises dedicated service by RPS members who have lost their lives while working in pharmacy.

The award was first presented in November 2023, and the first recipient was RPS Fellow Nina Barnett, who dedicated her life to coaching and mentoring members of the healthcare family and was an instrumental part in developing the RPS mentoring programme.

Who is eligible?

The Daniel Thomas Award is open to any RPS members who have lost their lives while at work.

How to nominate

Nominations for the Daniel Thomas Award are currently closed.

To nominate someone for the RPS Daniel Thomas Award:

  1. Email your submission(s) to [email protected]
  2. Include name, photograph, date of birth and a short biography (max 100-words) for public use
  3. Nominations must be sent or endorsed by an immediate family member
  4. This award can only be given to RPS members who die while working as pharmacists.1

Recipients of the award will be announced at our Annual Conference in November. Recipients families will receive a personal letter and card acknowledging their loved one’s dedication to the profession.

Find out more about the Daniel Thomas Award.

1 If you feel a submission meets the spirit rather than the letter of this guidance, please get in touch; this is an inclusive honour, and we are happy to discuss personal circumstances.

The Maplethorpe Fellowship

Cyril W. Maplethorpe

The Maplethorpe Fellowship was established after the death of Cyril W. Maplethorpe, with the aim of promoting pharmaceutical education and research excellence.

The Fellowship celebrates candidates from diverse backgrounds who propose strong research projects. The priority of the submitted projects should be to form a suitable platform for the candidate’s progression to a successful, long-term career in pharmaceutical research.

About Cyril Maplethorpe

Cyril Maplethorpe was a champion of education and research throughout his career, both in his role as Managing Director of Allen & Hanburys and in his position on the RPS Council.

He acted as chairman of the education committee for 17 years, as well as serving as Society President from 1963-1965.

He was a founding member of the Council of the School of Pharmacy, where he trained as a pharmaceutical chemist, and continued to have a close relationship with the school. 

The RPS does not fund or host this Fellowship; however, we are represented on the assessment panel.

2023 Maplethorpe Fellowship applications close on 17 April 2023.

Find out more about the Maplethorpe Fellowship and the applications process from King's College or UCL.