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It’s ‘good night’ from him (proud PM Cameron) and ‘good knight’ from her (Queen Elizabeth I)

February 19, 2013

YES PRIME MINISTER: Environment Secretary Owen Paterson presents John Brown, right, with his 'outstanding' award from PM David Cameron

YES PRIME MINISTER: Environment Secretary Owen Paterson presents John Brown, right, with his ‘outstanding’ award from PM David Cameron

FUNDRAISING phenomenon John Brown is the toast of the Tory Party nationally after picking up a lifetime award from Prime Minister David Cameron and a ‘knighthood’ from a queen.

The financial Mr Fix-It of the Tamworth Conservative Association collected the accolades in the space of just a few minutes during the local Party’s annual dinner at Drayton Manor.

Environment Secretary Owen Paterson presented the 80-year-old association chief fundraiser with an ‘outstanding achievement certificate’ from premier Cameron in recognition of his tireless work and staggering £170,000 contribution to Party funds.

The minister who is fronting the government response to the horsemeat-in-beef scandal praised Mr Brown for his “incredible effort”.
And the prime minister – in his message to the energetic octogenarian – borrowed a 50-year-old phrase from former Labour PM Harold Wilson to pay his own personal tribute.

Mr Cameron imitated the Socialist leader by using the famous quote, ‘They say a week is a long time in politics’.

The Labour prime minister, later Lord Wilson, who won four general elections uttered the famous line in 1964 – referring to the vagaries of politics and the fact that things can change very quickly.

The 21st century Tory premier told Mr Brown: “They say a week is a long time in politics. But for you to dedicate so many years of your life in serving our party makes me incredibly proud.”

He added: “Thank you on behalf of every Conservative leader, MP and candidate you have helped.”

ARISE SIR JOHN: Tutbury Castle curator Lesley Smith 'knights' John Brown with a spoon for his £170,000 fundraising efforts

ARISE SIR JOHN: Tutbury Castle curator Lesley Smith ‘knights’ John Brown with a spoon for his £170,000 fundraising efforts

Straight after the ceremony, the man who has raised £170,000 over a 12-year period found himself being ‘knighted’ with a spoon by dinner guest speaker Lesley Smith, who as Tutbury Castle curator portrays in costume the life and times of 16th century monarch, Queen Elizabeth 1.

Mr Brown, from Little Aston, just missed out on a Tory Party record at the annual dinner. The 263 guests fell nine short of being the biggest Conservative association gathering outside of London in the last five years.

The unassuming fundraiser retorted: “We do what we have to do. I’ve only got 20 years left to serve.”
In November, the party worker collected another ‘Dear John’ award for his fundraising efforts from Conservative Party chairman Grant Shapps.

The Tory Party boss told Mr Brown at a Tamworth Manifesto Club luncheon at Swinfen Hall Hotel: “On behalf of the Party, thank you for all you have done during your years of valuable service.

“Whenever Tamworth has needed strong support they have been able to call on you. Considering it was at a time when Tamworth didn’t have a Tory MP and the Party was in opposition, this really is truly remarkable.”

Mr Brown was presented with the letter by South Staffordshire MP Gavin Williamson, ministerial aide to the Northern Ireland Office, and Tamworth MP Chris Pincher.

DEAR JOHN: A thank-you letter from Tory Party chairman Grant Shapps is presented to John Brown, centre, by Tamworth MP Chris Pincher, left, and ministerial aide Gavin Williamson, right

DEAR JOHN: A thank-you letter from Tory Party chairman Grant Shapps is presented to John Brown, centre, by Tamworth MP Chris Pincher, left, and ministerial aide Gavin Williamson, right

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