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Gerrard ‘speechless’ after receiving freedom of Liverpool

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Former Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard recently retired, ending a 19-year playing career

Former Liverpool and England captain Steven Gerrard is to be awarded the Freedom of the City of Liverpool.

Gerrard has been put forward for his contribution to national and international football, and charity work by the Mayor of Liverpool.

Receiving the city’s highest civic honour “leaves me speechless”, Gerrard said as the nominations were announced.

Nominations are due to be formally agreed by councillors on 18 January. Ceremonies take place later this year.

‘Proud and delighted’

Gerrard, who played 710 times for the Reds, winning nine trophies, said: “I was stunned and overwhelmed when I heard my name was being put forward.

“Liverpool is my home city and so to be acknowledged in this way leaves me speechless.

“To even think about getting such an award makes me feel very humble and of course immensely proud.”

Mayor Joe Anderson said: “Whether you’re a red or blue, everyone agrees he is a fantastic ambassador for the city.”

Also being nominated is Tony McGann, chairman of the Eldonian Community Based Housing Association, who successfully campaigned for the regeneration of the local neighbourhood in Vauxhall in the 1970s.

He said he was “proud and delighted”.

“All I want to do when I go away is come back to Liverpool. Our people are the best in the world and to be recognised by your home city is amazing,” he said.

Other organisations being recommended to receive the Freedom of the City are:

  • 103 Regiment Royal Artillery: A reserve unit that trains with some of the Army’s most advanced systems
  • Bradbury Fields: It is dedicated to working with blind and partially sighted people
  • Cream: Formed in Liverpool in the early 1990s, it is now a leading event promoter
  • Medicash: A healthcare insurance provider that has donated £70m to charity since 1871
  • Girl Guiding Merseyside: The first Guide unit opened in the area in 1913
  • Liverpool and District Battalion of the Boys’ Brigade: It recently celebrated its 125th anniversary
  • Merseyside Scouts: It helps young people in the region explore the outdoors

Article source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-merseyside-38554717