Captain Tom Moore receives gold Blue Peter badge

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image captionCaptain Tom Moore was awarded the badge by his grandchildren Georgia (left) and Benji (right)

Captain Tom Moore has been awarded a prestigious gold Blue Peter badge for raising almost £33m for the NHS.

The badge is the show's highest accolade and famous recipients include the Queen, Sir David Attenborough and Mary Berry.

The war veteran completed 100 laps of his Bedfordshire garden by his 100th birthday last week, receiving donations from more than 1.5m supporters.

Presenter Lindsey Russell described him as "a beacon of light".

Capt Tom's birthday on Thursday was marked with an RAF flypast and a message from the Queen.

media captionCaptain Tom Moore celebrates his birthday in style

He was also made an honorary colonel in a letter presented by Lt Col Thomas Miller, commanding officer of the 1st Battalion The Yorkshire Regiment, at his home.

Only a handful of gold badges are presented by Blue Peter each year to outstanding individuals who are considered to be role models, inspiring the nation's children.

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Ms Russell was helped by Capt Tom's grandchildren, Benji and Georgia, to surprise him with the badge and to comply with social distancing measures.

She told him: "We at Blue Peter think it is brilliant what you have achieved and what you have done over the past couple of weeks, the money and attention you have raised.

"As Benji so rightly put it, during this time of darkness you are such a beacon of light.

"On Blue Peter our highest accolade is the gold Blue Peter badge and it is something that the Queen, amongst a few others, have got, so on behalf of Blue Peter and our wonderful audience we would like to award you with our highest accolade."

Capt Tom replied: "That's absolutely amazing, thank you very much. I am very proud to receive it because I have always been a great follower of Blue Peter - I remember the elephant, which is quite a few years ago now!"

The special episode of Blue Peter will air on 7 May on CBBC at 17:30 GMT and will be on BBC iPlayer.

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