Sir Roger Bannister, celebrated neurologist and the first man to run a mile in less than four minutes, has had his achievements recognised with yet another honour.

The 87-year-old from North Oxford was made a Companion of Honour in the New Year’s Honours List – becoming one of just 54 living people to be so honoured.

Sir Roger, who is also a CBE, said he was thrilled.

He said: “I have always been astonishingly lucky in my career, which has encompassed both sport and neurology.

“I never anticipated or predicted or wished particularly for a further honour but I am delighted to receive this.”

Sir Roger was made a Companion of Honour for services to sport, including his time as the first chairman of the Sports Council – now called Sport England.

He famously broke the four-minute mile barrier in May 1954 at the Iffley Road athletics track, which has since been renamed after him.

But he said he felt his latest honour also recognised his 40 years as a neurologist, including his major contribution to the field of autonomic failure.

Sir Roger, who revealed he had Parkinson’s in 2014, said: “The recognition is a very timely one because I wrote an autobiography called Twin Tracks which has focused on the comparison of the two fields.

"I would hope that my colleagues with whom I worked in hospitals for 25 years will appreciate the honour, as well as those who were in the world of running.”

The honours list includes a number of British olympians who won gold in Rio de Janeiro in the summer and in London four years ago.

Sir Roger added that his own honour – given his work with the Sports Council – was particularly fitting in such a successful year for British sport.

He said: “My chairmanship of the sports council came to fruition and was reflected in the very successful olympics in London and in Rio. I do take an interest in what I would call the healthy side of sport.”

The Oxford University graduate lives in the city with his wife Lady Moyra and is a grandfather of 14, nine of whom live nearby.

He holds honorary degrees from a number of universities and was given the Freedom of the City of Oxford in 2004.

Lady Moyra said: “I am very proud. He has been doing good one way or another for a long time.

“We get the most amazing letters from people even now, it is unbelievable, people who have read his books and then joined a sports club and transformed their lives.

“I am thrilled for him.”