Freedom of the borough for Mark Noble

16 December 2016 in 2012 Games and legacy
West Ham United captain Mark Noble was bestowed with the honour of the freedom of the London borough of Newham during an official reception at the Old Town Hall in Stratford on Thursday (15 December).
Freedom of the borough scrolls
​Freedom of the Borough is a way of expressing civic pride and recognising contributions to the borough. It is highest honour Newham Council can bestow.

Mayor of Newham Sir Robin Wales said: “It is an honour that is offered sparingly, but when we do, it is awarded to remarkable people. Each recipient has made a significant contribution to Newham life past and present. All are ambassadors, helping to improve how we are perceived locally, nationally and internationally.

“Mark is the epitome of the local boy who has done well. Born in Canning Town, he made his debut for West Ham United as a 17-year-old and has now clocked up almost 400 league appearances, scoring almost 50 goals.

“He is also dedicated to supporting the community by working on a housing project called Legacy that will offer social and affordable homes. He is also patron of the Richard House children’s hospice in Beckton. He encourages young people to follow his example by working hard, by being a good and respectful person and by looking after your community.”

Watched by his family Mark received an embossed scroll and a medal. He also signed the borough’s official freedom book.

He said: “Mark said: “I’d like to thank Newham Council not just for the honour of freedom of the borough, but for all the work it does day in, day out, for local people.

“Newham is a wonderful place to grow up. It is where I learned to be a man. I had an incredible upbringing thanks to my family. I’ve achieved a lot of things in my life through football and with West Ham United but this is one of the best things that has happened to me. I am honoured to accept freedom of the borough on behalf of my family. This is an incredible moment for them.

“As a kid I learned to play football on the street by trying to kick down all the ‘no ball’ signs that were chucked up everywhere. Football has provided an incredible life for me and my family. Newham is a wonderful place to learn a trade.”

Other scrolls awarded on Thursday went to: Christine Bowden – Honorary Freedom and Alderwoman; Paul Chelliah – Honorary Freedom; Marie Collier – Honorary Freedom and Alderwoman; Val Fone – Honorary Freedom; Keith Hasler – Honorary Freedom; Devendra Patel – Honorary Freedom; Newham and Essex Beagles Athletics Club – Honorary Freedom.

Four others have accepted honours but were unable to attend on the night. Scrolls will be awarded at a later date to Shama Ahmad MBE – Honorary Freedom and Alderwoman; Lew Boyce – Honorary Freedom; Kevin Jenkins OBE – Honorary Freedom and Alderman; and the family of former councillor John Lock who was conferred with freedom in October but passed away last month.