Campaign group Republic has called on the government to follow Australia's example and scrap knights and dames from the honours system.

Republic has applauded the decision by Australian prime minister Malcolm Turnbull to scrap knights and dames just eighteen months after they were re-introduced.

Republic's CEO Graham Smith said today:

"In any country these titles are silly, completely at odds with modern democratic values and wide open to abuse by the political classes."

"In the UK the honours system is little more than a way for political leaders to thank their friends, allies and donors."

"It is shameful that David Cameron has brought back political knighthoods, rewarding colleagues for support or handing them out as compensation for being sacked."

"We need fullscale reform of Britain's honours system - no more imperial honours, no more medieval titles.  We need a simple, honest and credible way for the nation to honour those who deserve recognition."