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Talented Bromsgrove bobby receives prestigious award
4:50pm Tuesday 1st July 2014 in Local
A TALENTED Bromsgrove bobby has been recognised with a prestigious award from the Prime Minister.
PC Ian Northcott, nicknamed the Busking Bobby, has received a Point of Light award that recognises outstanding individual volunteers - people who are making a change in their community and inspiring others.
Ian earned his nickname when he was on duty one day and began chatting to a busker.
He then performed an impromptu rendition of Oasis' Wonderwall in front of crowd that began to form.
His performance was videoed and uploaded to YouTube, where it went viral, being seen 750,000 times.
Ian was nominated for the award after founding his charity Socks and Chocs for the Homeless, which encourages people to donate socks, hats, gloves, sleeping bags and chocolate to brighten up and make the festive season more comfortable for people living on the streets.
The charity was Ian's own creation, unconnected to his work as an officer, and Ian has been using his singing talent to raise awareness.
The appeal has been far reaching, with donations coming in from as far away as Japan and Turkey, In 2013, the team delivered 8,500 pairs of socks and 229 sleeping bags in Birmingham, Wolverhampton, Coventry and Worcester.
The officer is now inspiring people all over the country to start their own branch of the charity.
On Friday, (June 27), Bromsgrove MP and Culture Secretary Sajid Javid presented Ian with his award at the Holiday Inn.
"I’m honoured to receive this award," Ian said.
"The ethos behind Socks and Chocs is lots of people doing a little bit, not a few doing a lot. This result has shown what can be achieved when people pull together.
"It’s not about money - it’s about dry socks on feet and sleeping bags keeping people warm.”
Prime Minister David Cameron said: "Ian is showing what can be done by taking the initiative and encouraging more people to help others in their community.
"I’m delighted to be recognising him as a Point of Light.”
For more on the charity visit socksandchocs.co.uk.