JEREMY Vine was congratulated by his brother Tim after he received an honorary degree from Durham University.

The BBC radio two presenter was today awarded an honorary Doctor of Civil Law while proud Tim looked on.

Stand-up comedian Tim said: "We have had some pictures taken of me and Jeremy in his robes, and when they put that in the paper, instead of Spot the Ball, they should have Spot the Thick One.

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"This is his second degree, he's already got one. I didn't go to university so I think they gave this one to the wrong brother.

"I am waiting for a call from Cambridge about my honorary degree for services to wordplay."

Jeremy added: "I don't think I've ever received a higher honour than this.

"My three years at Durham were some of the happiest of my whole life, not just because I discovered The Smiths when I was there, but also because of the quality of friends I made and the standard of teaching.

"How lucky was I to be in a place of such beauty and intelligence.

"I'd like to thank all the reckless souls at the University who thought I merited such an honour.

"Without the confidence Durham gave me I wouldn't have been able to use a telephone, let alone have a radio show."

Jeremy, an English Language graduate, attended Hatfield College between 1983 and 1986.

He is a former editor of Durham's student newspaper, Palatinate.

After graduating he became a BBC news trainee, later joining Radio 4's flagship news programme Today as a reporter.

He was the BBC's political correspondent and Africa correspondent before joining Newsnight in 1999 as one of three permanent presenters.

He has since presented Panorama and Points of View on BBC1 and the quiz show Eggheads on BBC 2.

Jeremy has won three Sony Gold Awards for his work since taking over the lunchtime slot on BBC Radio 2 from Jimmy Young.