Hainault Boys’ Brigade stalwart John, 88, oldest winner of Jack Petchey award

Jack Petchey’s achievement awards were launched to recognise and encourage young people – at 88 John Bush is several generations away from the entrepreneur’s original aim.

But his work with his church’s Boys’ Brigade has earned him a well-deserved leader award and the honour of being the oldest recipient.

John, of Kelsie Way Hainault, has spent the past 18 years working with the Boys’ Brigade at Hainault Baptist Church in Franklyn Gardens.

Mr Bush said: “I was so happy to get the award; I did expect it as I heard I would be receiving it last year, but at the same time it’s a wonderful feeling to be recognised in front of such a big audience like that. “I didn’t have any children, but if you look at it in another way I have hundreds,” he added.

A spokesman for the Jack Petchey Foundation confirmed the previous oldest holder of the award being an 83-year-old woman.

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Mr Bush was an export sales correspondent, before retiring 18 years ago.

He leads the opening and closing prayers, known as devotions, for the group every week, as well as helping out generally.

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Mr Bush was honoured at an evening event involving members of six Boys’ Brigade Companies from the Redbridge and Waltham Forest Battalion at Highams Park Baptist Church.

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