Veterans

Captain Sir Tom Moore: Veteran 'Absolutely Overawed' After Being Knighted By Queen

The Second World War veteran captured the hearts of the nation for his remarkable fundraising efforts during the coronavirus lockdown.

Second World War veteran and NHS fundraising hero Captain Sir Tom Moore has been knighted by the Queen in a ceremony at Windsor Castle.

The 100-year-old, who raised more than £32m for the NHS by walking laps of his Bedfordshire garden, was joined by his family for the special investiture.

Her Majesty used the sword that belonged to her father, George VI, as she presented Captain Sir Tom with the insignia of Knight Bachelor.

The ceremony took place within the confines of Windsor Castle, with no positions for the public.

The Queen was joined in the quadrangle by the Master of the Household, retired Vice Admiral Tony Johnstone-Burt, who carried the insignia of Knight Bachelor, while one of the Queen's Pages was entrusted with King George VI's sword.

With her father's sword in her hand, Her Majesty lightly touched him first on his right shoulder then his left with the blade – officially making him a knight.

The Queen personally praised the veteran, saying to him: "Thank you so much, an amazing amount of money you raised."

Captain Sir Tom Moore holding medal after he received his knighthood from Queen Elizabeth II during a ceremony at Windsor Castle 170720 CREDIT PA.jpg
The 100-year-old poses for the camera shortly after being knighted (Picture: PA).

After the ceremony Captain Sir Tom said: "I am absolutely overawed, this is such a high award and to get it from Her Majesty as well – what more can anyone wish for?

"This has been an absolutely magnificent day for me."

Asked what was better, raising more than £32m or having the Queen "break her lockdown" to award him the honour, Captain Sir Tom replied: "The money is very useful but you've only one Queen, and when you get a message from the Queen there's no value that can be placed on that."

The veteran went on to say: "To meet the Queen was more than anyone could expect, never ever did I imagine I would get so close to the Queen and have such a kind message from her, that was really outstanding, it was truly outstanding."

Waiting for Sir Tom was his family – daughter Hannah Ingram-Moore, son-in-law Colin Ingram, grandson Benjie and granddaughter Georgia.

Captain Sir Tom has become a national icon for his fundraising efforts.

His work has seen him appointed the first Honorary Colonel of the Army Foundation College in Harrogate.

The veteran, who served in India and Burma during the Second World War, has also received a Pride of Britain award and become the oldest artist to reach number one in the UK singles chart.