Sir Rod Stewart
Sir Rod Stewart was joined by his wife Penny Lancaster and two sons at Buckingham Palace as he received his knighthood REUTERS/Gareth Fulller/Pool

Sir Rod Stewart marked a milestone today (11 October) as he received a knighthood at Buckingham Palace. The iconic singer was amongst the public figures to appear in the Queen's birthday honours list in celebration of his services to music and charity.

The 71-year-old musician was accompanied at the ceremony by his wife Penny Lancaster and their two sons, Alistair, 10, and Aiden, five. Prince William did the honours of knighting Stewart in absence of the Queen, who will greet the singer at a reception taking place at the Royal Academy Of Arts in London.

Recalling his exchange with the Duke Of Cambridge during the ceremony, Stewart said according to the BBC: "We talked about music and he said: 'It's great that you're still going', and I said: 'I have to – I've got eight children.

"He congratulated me on my long career – and I said how happy this made me. I just wish my mum and dad had been here to see it."

The musician also disagreed with suggestions that 'Empire' should be removed from the honour's title, stating: "The Empire's not quite as big as it used to be, but it's still there, so I'm all for keeping the Empire."

Stewart began his career in the 1960s as a member of The Dimensions before going on to sell over 100 million records worldwide as a solo artist. Some of Stewart's biggest hits to date include, Maggie May, Do Ya Think I'm Sexy and First Cut Is The Deepest.

Reflecting on his career, the singer added proudly: "I've led a wonderful life and have had a tremendous career thanks to the generous support of the great British public. This monumental honour has topped it off and I couldn't ask for anything more. I thank Her Majesty and promise to wear it well."

British actor David Oyelowo was also made an OBE and said of the honour: "To be honoured by the Queen in this way having been aided by her son's charity feels like a beautiful full-circle moment."