One of Britain's most respected actors was in Chester yesterday to pick up an honour from the city's university.

Poirot star David Suchet received a Doctor of Letters from the University of Chester, in recognition of his outstanding contribution to drama and the arts.

He was joined of hundreds of students at Chester Cathedral for day two of the university's graduation ceremonies, which are running until Friday. 

Mr Suchet said: “To receive an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Chester is a great honour and provides another piece of the jigsaw in my relationship with the city, as the Gateway Theatre Chester was my very first professional acting job in 1969.”

The actor took the title role of Hercule Poirot in the long-running television adaptation of Agatha Christie’s novels in 1989. He received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Royal Television Society for his 25-year portrayal of the detective in 2014. He won an Olivier Award for the Best Revival of Long Day’s Journey into Night, and an international Emmy award for Best Actor when he played Robert Maxwell in the BBC's drama about the media tycoon in 2008. 

Yesterday's services also honoured Dame Sue Ion, who received a Doctor of Engineering in recognition of her outstanding contribution to the nuclear industry and the wider world of engineering, and John Greaves, who received a Master’s of Business Administration for his outstanding contribution to external and internal communications at MBNA and, more recently, as a board member of Marketing Cheshire.