20 May 2020 10:38
Media playback is unsupported on your device Media caption Captain Tom: 'I hope the Queen's not heavy handed with the sword' Captain Tom Moore said he was "overawed" on finding out he was to be awarded a knighthood for his fundraising efforts. The war veteran raised more than £32m for NHS charities by walking 100 laps of his garden before his 100th birthday in April. Capt Tom's initial reaction was "this can't be true" when told about the honour. The centenarian received the special nomination from the prime minister. Boris Johnson said the veteran had provided the country with "a beacon of light through the fog of coronavirus".
Capt Tom said he had been "given an outstanding honour by the Queen and the prime minister". "I am certainly delighted and overawed by the fact this has happened to me," he said. "I thought this can't be true, I've always said this won't happen and it appears it actually has. "I certainly never anticipated that this letter would arrive for me." His daughter, Hannah Ingram-Moore, said the knighthood was "simply extraordinary". Grandson Benjie Ingram-Moore said: "You never even dream of a letter like this coming through the door.
As an honorary colonel, his official title will be Captain Sir Thomas Moore under Ministry of Defence protocol. The knighthood, which has been approved by the Queen, will be formally announced on Wednesday. Capt Tom, who was given the honorary title of colonel on his 100th birthday, had initially set out to raise £1,000 for NHS charities by walking laps of the 25m (82ft) loop in his garden in Marston Moretaine, Bedfordshire. But he eventually raised £32,794,701 from more than one and a half million supporters. In a statement, Boris Johnson said Capt Tom's "fantastic fundraising broke records" and "inspired the whole country". "On behalf of everyone who has been moved by his incredible story, I want to say a huge thank you. He's a true national treasure," he said. Labour Party leader Sir Keir Starmer congratulated Capt Tom and said he had "brought inspiration to millions and helped all of us to celebrate the extraordinary achievements of our NHS". "In his actions, Tom embodied the national solidarity which has grown throughout this crisis, and showed us that everyone can play their part in helping build a better future." Image copyright @captaintommoore Image caption Capt Tom served in India and Myanmar during World War Two Capt Tom, who was born in Keighley, West Yorkshire, captured the hearts of the nation and his birthday celebrations were extensive. The occasion was marked with an RAF flypast as well as birthday greetings from the Queen and prime minister. He was also made an honorary colonel and received an estimated 140,000 cards. Media playback is unsupported on your device Media caption Captain Tom: Cockpit view of RAF flypast in Marston Moretaine Find BBC News: East of England on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. If you have a story suggestion email [email protected] Get involved with the news in your community