Fiddle-playing Ilford busker raises £45,000 for charity with Tube performances across London

PUBLISHED: 07:00 24 May 2017

Max Reid (left) wowing commuters on the London Underground. Photo: RNOH

Max Reid (left) wowing commuters on the London Underground. Photo: RNOH


A busker from Redbridge has raised almost £50,000 for the hospital that helped give him his life back.

Ilford resident Max Reid can often be seen on London Underground busking pitches wowing commuters with a medley of pieces played on the fiddle.

Throughout the week, travellers around London can spot him anywhere from Canary Wharf to Gants Hill Tube stations.

Max has been wheelchair-bound since suffering spinal malformations and has been treated numerous times by specialists at the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital (RNOH).

Since April 2015, Max has donated all of his proceeds from busking on the Underground and at the London Marathon to the RNOH Charity.

The astoundingly selfless act has now earned the RNOH £45,000.

Max said: “My running days are over, but if people are going to throw money at me for sitting down and playing fiddle tunes, that’s fine with me.

“About twenty years ago the Spinal Cord Injury Centre at Stanmore patched me up and gave me my life back.

“Or rather, a new life as a street musician.

“The least I can do to thank them is to help raise money towards improving facilities for the hospital’s spinally-injured patients.”

Max’s three sons, David, Brian and Norman Reid, have also helped with the fundraising effort, raising more than £3,000 in sponsorship money by taking part in the Milton Keynes half-marathon and the Nottingham marathon.

Rosie Stolarski, the charity’s director of fundraising and development, said: “We are so grateful to Max and his sons for the amazing amount of money they have raised for the Spinal Cord Injury Centre gardens.

“Their contribution represents a significant step towards our raising the funds needed to construct the gardens, which will provide an oasis of calm for patients with acute spinal cord injuries.

“I’ve been delighted to get to know Max since he first contacted the Charity in September 2014. If you ever spot him busking on the Tube, I recommend you talk to him – he is a true character!”

Max’s will now go towards the trust’s new spinal cord injury centre gardens, which will be created in the near future.

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