Portrait of national hero Captain Tom Moore to hang at North Yorkshire army college

A portrait of the 100-year-old veteran Yorkshire-born British Army officer who has become a national hero after raising more than £33m for the National Health Service during the coronavirus pandemic has been gifted to an Army College in North Yorkshire.

Friday, 22nd May 2020, 12:13 pm
Updated Friday, 22nd May 2020, 12:14 pm
Lt. Col. Rich Hall admires the portrait after the presentation.
Lt. Col. Rich Hall admires the portrait after the presentation.

The story of Captain Tom Moore captured the hearts of the nation.

Since his amazing achievements he has been put forward by the Prime Minister Boris Johnson for a knighthood and been made an honorary Colonel of the Army Foundation College in Harrogate, North Yorkshire.

Such was the inspiration of Captain Tom that North Yorkshire artist Neil Arms felt compelled to paint a portrait of him with the NHS rainbow as a backdrop.

Artist Neil Arms pictured with his daughters.

He said that the image of an elderly man, proud of his military background, with his military discipline and medals walking up and down his garden slowly raising funds for our amazing NHS spurred him to pick up his paintbrush.

Neil said: “Initially I would have liked the painting to go to a place of Tom’s choice but little did I know what would happen in the following weeks! And, after he became world famous I knew that this would be extremely difficult.

“When I discovered on his 100th birthday that he'd been made honorary Colonel of the Foundation College in Harrogate, I decided to contact them there and offer the painting as a donation."

Mr Arms said he offered the painting as a donation and was overwhelmed when the Commanding Officer at the college, Lieutenant Colonel Rich Hall, accepted his offer.

“I was totally overwhelmed with pride to discover that my painting would be accepted at the Foundation College. In hindsight, my painting could not be in a better place!

"Even with the strict social distancing rules that were in place it was a true honour to finally hand over the piece to the Commanding Officer. A day I will remember for ever,” he added.

Lt. Col. Hall said he had been delighted and honoured to receive the portrait describing it is an inspiring piece of artwork that imaginatively captures the essence of the veteran and what he has done for the NHS

The Commanding Officer of the college added: “More than that though it represents another example where our Honorary Colonel has inspired the public through his values and inspirational story.

“The handover ceremony was emotional too. Neil was clearly moved by what the college represents - it’s story of transformation and social mobility.

"I think it took him by surprise when he began to understand what we deliver and achieve for our trainees.”

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