Veterans

'Inspirational' Captain Tom Moore Appointed Honorary Colonel In Time For 100th Birthday

The veteran was also reissued the Defence Medal 1939–1945, which he had been missing, as an extra birthday surprise.

NHS fundraiser Captain Tom Moore has been appointed the first Honorary Colonel of the Army Foundation College in Harrogate. 

The appointment was made ahead of the Second World War veteran's 100th birthday on Thursday which is being marked with two military flypasts.

Capt Tom has raised more than £29 million for the NHS by walking 100 laps of his Bedfordshire garden before of his centenary birthday.

Earlier this month, he became the oldest artist to reach number one in the UK singles chart, after releasing a charity cover of 'You'll Never Walk Alone' alongside Michael Ball and the NHS Voices of Care Choir.

Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said: "Captain Tom is simply inspirational and I am absolutely delighted the Army has honoured him in such a fitting manner.

“He not only embodies the spirit of our incredible veteran community, but the resolve of this nation."

The Army Foundation College prepares 16 to 17-year-old junior soldiers for a career in the British Army.

As Honorary Colonel, Capt Tom will be invited to speak to the young people about his experiences.

Capt Tom Moore smiling after being appointed Honorary Colonel 290430 EMBARGO 300420 0001 CREDIT MOD
Capt Tom is all smiles after being appointed Honorary Colonel (Picture: MOD).

The college's Commanding Officer, Lieutenant Colonel Richard Hall, said: "Our staff and junior soldiers stand in awe at his achievements and we see his values of his sacrifice and service to one’s country reflected in the college’s ethos.

"Colonel Tom’s benevolence, his steadiness on parade and his determination to give something back are all truly inspirational. 

"To have such a role model for the Army Foundation College, and to count him as one of our own, is a privilege and an honour."

Capt's Tom appointment was formally announced to him in a letter from the Chief of General Staff, which was delivered by soldiers from the Yorkshire Regiment. 

He was also presented with his Second World War Defence Medal, which he had lost, just in time for next week's VE Day anniversary celebrations.

The soldiers also handed Capt Tom their annual Regimental Medal, given to an individual of the Regiment family who is considered to have made the greatest contribution in the last year.

The veteran, who recently won a Pride of Britain Award for his efforts, said he will continue to walk laps of his garden for as long as donations are made.