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Red Cross honours Annie Lennox with star-studded musical tribute

30 November 2009

On World Aids Day 2009, dedicated philanthropist Annie Lennox will be honoured as a Freeman of the City of London after being nominated by the British Red Cross.

The presentation at London's Guildhall on 1 December will be followed by a star-studded dinner and musical tribute presented by Stephen Fry and hosted by the Red Cross. Performers will include the Noisettes, Little Boots and the African Children’s Choir. The star's friends and family including Brian Eno will give speeches.

A dedicated fundraiser

Annie LennoxBRCLennox was nominated for the Honorary Freedom, which is the highest honour the City of London can bestow, by the British Red Cross International Fundraising Committee, in recognition of her fundraising and humanitarian work. 

In 2008, she helped to raise over £1 million for the Red Cross at the Grosvenor House art and antiques fair where she received a Red Cross services to humanity award for her work to raise awareness of the global HIV pandemic.

Lennox said: “As a humanitarian, I have long been an admirer of the amazing work of the British Red Cross to tackle HIV across the world and am amazed and honoured to have been acknowledged in this way.”

A traditional ceremony

She follows in the footsteps of previous recipients of the Honorary Freedom including the Queen, Nelson Mandela, Princess Diana, Luciano Pavarotti, Florence Nightingale and Winston Churchill.

The Freedom of the City of London is a traditional ceremony that historically provided trading rights and alleged privileges including the right to go about the city with a drawn sword, and to be drunk and disorderly without fear of arrest. There are no privileges associated with the award today, and anyone can apply for a Freedom but must be nominated and chosen for the Honorary Freedom that Lennox will receive.

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