Wolverhampton-born pharmacist granted Freedom of the City of London

A man who was born in Wolverhampton has been granted the Freedom of the City of London and joins many celebrated holders of the rank, including Stephen Fry and Sir Tim Berners Lee.

Nicholas Beavon has been granted the Freedom of the City of London
Nicholas Beavon has been granted the Freedom of the City of London

Previous holders of the title also include Florence Nightingale and Captain Sir Tom Moore.

The ancient distinction allows 59-year-old Nicholas Beavon to herd sheep over London Bridge but he said that he "doubted he would ever take up that opportunity".

Nicholas, who grew up in Wolverhampton, attended Northicote School before going on to study pharmacy at Kings College, London, and still has relatives living locally.

He is now the South West London Clinical Commissioning Group's chief pharmacist in the Wandsworth Borough.

Nicholas, who has worked in the NHS for more than 35 years and in Wandsworth for more than 20 years, was nominated for the Freedom of the City by a member of one of the London Livery Companies, The Worshipful Society of Apothercaries which was founded in 1617.

The privilege is awarded to people who have achieved success, recognition or celebrity in their chosen field.

Nicholas said: "I am flattered and humbled to be given this honour.

“I was really thrilled to get it.”

His brother, Clive Beavon, and sister, Caroline Beavon, attended the ceremony on January 14.

The Freedom of the City of London is one of the UK’s oldest surviving traditional ceremonies and the first grant is believed to have been presented in 1237.

Nicholas has previously been awarded a Fellowship of the Faculty of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society in 2015 and a life-long Fellowship of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society in 2016 for his contribution to the pharmacy profession.

He is chairman of the National Pharmaceutical Advisers Group, a role he has held since 2013 and which gives him the opportunity to work with primary care colleagues across the country.

The role includes links to the Department of Health, NHS England and the Royal Pharmaceutical Society, helping to shape the future of the profession and contribute to national policies and improvements to patient care.

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