PLANS are under way to honour D-Day runaway hero Bernard Jordan with the freedom of the city.
Brighton and Hove mayor Brian Fitch is recommending the 89-year-old war hero be awarded the highest honour in the city for the way his “spirit and determination” has “captured the imagination of all generations”.
Councillor Fitch is writing to the Brighton and Hove City Council chief executive Penny Thompson recommending that Mr Jordan be given the freedom of Brighton and Hove.
If granted, Mr Jordan would join a select number of VIPs to be granted the accolade, such as First World War hero Henry Allingham, Olympic champion Steve Ovett, Burmese democracy campaigner Aung San Suu Kyi and The Argus’ very own Adam Trimingham.
Mr Jordan is settling back into life at The Pines care home in Furze Hill in Hove after making his own way to France for the 70th anniversary of D-Day.
The pensioner left the care home with his medals hidden under his coat after being told there was no room on a Royal British Legion tour.
Police launched a missing person’s search but a fellow veteran called to say Mr Jordan was in France and he became a media sensation.
He was paid by the Daily Mail for exclusive interviews at the weekend and was contracted to ITV yesterday.
The former Hove mayor, who turns 90 next Monday, returned to the city on Saturday morning to a hero’s welcome from staff who laid out bunting and flags.
Not only did Mr Jordan manage to make it to France single-handedly, but he also evaded security to get within 100 yards of international dignitaries including the Queen at the official D-Day ceremony, only to walk out again because of boredom, according to reports by The Daily Mail.
Coun Fitch has invited Mr Jordan to the mayor’s parlour today for a meeting planning the city’s Armistice Day celebrations in November.
Coun Fitch said: “I will be putting it to the council that we should honour our heroes like Bernard Jordan for his fantastic and successful effort in getting to Normandy against all the odds.
“It’s that spirit and determination that led Britain and its allies to liberate Europe from the tyranny of the Nazis.
“It’s not often that you get the opportunity to give the city’s highest honour to someone who has served as a councillor but I feel that it’s really fitting to honour him in this way.”