Marcus Rashford’s surprise Pride of Britain award as he vows fight to feed kids goes on

He has already won the hearts of the nation in his fight to make sure no child goes hungry – and now Marcus Rashford has been named our Pride of Britain too.

The Manchester United and England striker has been given a Special Recognition award for his dogged campaign to stop children going hungry over the summer.

“He was selected by the panel of judges after receiving thousands of nominations for his successful campaign which forced Boris Johnson into a U turn.

Modest Marcus said simply: “No way!” on receiving his award.

The surprise is one of the highlights of the Daily Mirror Pride of Britain Award, in partnership with TSB, which will be shown on ITV next Sunday at 9pm.

But then he added: “Ultimately no kids should miss meals. For me that should be just standard no matter where you come from. If we get that as the new normal then we have made a lot of strides forward.”

The 22-year-old had dedicated his time in lockdown to fight on behalf of 200,000 disadvantaged children who receive free school meals to force Boris Johnson in to a u-turn over plans to end support over the summer.

Determined to help children like him, who had grown up receiving free school meals, he also helped raise £20million to feed another three million people and is continuing to provide a powerful voice for under-privileged families.

“I attended Pride of Britain last year so I was able to see firsthand just how deserving the recipients of the awards are,” Marcus said.

“I am extremely humbled but I’d like to think that I am receiving this award on behalf of all of the incredible people who have selflessly stepped up to support their communities during this pandemic.

“I have met many of them and I am no more deserving than them.

“Parents who have sacrificed everything to feed their children during this challenging time, people who are volunteering at the FareShare food banks day in and day out, people who are fighting to protect our most vulnerable children every minute of the day.

“It is those people who really make me proud to be British and really define us as a United Kingdom.

“So today, I accept this award on behalf of all of those who step up without the need for thanks and accolades. I appreciate every single one of you.”

The England star was surprised by Ashley Banjo, who presented the award to him, after he went to meet a young winner Emmie Narayan-Nicholas in Manchester last month.