Earlier today - Thursday 20 December 2018 - award-winning underwater photographer Dr Alex Mustard was made a Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire.
He was awarded the MBE medal by fellow scuba diver, HRH Prince Charles in recognition of his award-winning underwater photography. Mustard later remarked on social media that HRH Prince Charles had told him to keep taking pictures of plastic in the ocean so we can beat the problem.
Alex continually pushes the bar and inspires me constantly. One of my greatest compliments was when Alex worked to reproduce one of my award winning images giving me credit. Todd Mintz
Several divers congratulated Mustard on social media. Two comments echoed HRH Prince Charles' words "Alex, you're an ambassador for the whole underwater community - photographers and wildlife alike", and "I agree with the Prince. You’ve inspired me to take some plastic photos too."
Fourth Element also congratulated Alex Mustard. "Alex has taken some of the iconic shots that we have used in our campaigns."
When I spoke to Alex after the ceremony he told me "this was totally unexpected, but a wonderful surprise when it was announced in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list. Officially it was given for “Services to Underwater Photography” which certainly raised plenty of interest in the Investiture Ceremony. Prince Charles is an experienced scuba diver, so took a real interest in what I do, asking me about the advances in photographic equipment in recent years and also stressing the importance of raising awareness of the problems that the oceans face."