Fundraiser Tom Moore knocks Dame Vera Lynn off iTunes top spot
Captain Tom Moore’s charity single You’ll Never Walk Alone has gone to number one in the iTunes chart.
The track, which the 99-year-old fundraiser recorded with Michael Ball, has pushed Dame Vera Lynn and Katherine Jenkins’ duet of We’ll Meet Again to number two.
The 1945 Rodgers and Hammerstein song will raise money for the NHS, alongside Captain Moore’s ongoing walking appeal.
The well-known Carousel number has become an anthem for medical staff during the coronavirus pandemic.
The new version features an introduction from Captain Moore, who said: “When you walk through a storm, hold your head up high and don’t be afraid of the dark.
“At the end of a storm there’s a golden sky and the sweet silver song of a lark.”
The single also features the NHS Voices for Care Choir.
The Queen also mentioned the song in her address to the nation, two weeks into the lockdown.
The duet of the wartime anthem with soprano Jenkins is raising money for the same cause as You’ll Never Walk Alone, the NHS Charities Together.
Hailing Captain Moore as an “inspiration”, Ball said singing with him has been “one of the single greatest honours of my career”.
The West End star went on: “Not only is he the biggest single fundraiser in British history and a decorated war veteran, he is the most charming man you could ever wish to meet.”
Captain Moore said: “I never in my wildest dreams imagined I would be releasing a single with Michael Ball OBE, but I also never thought it possible for me to walk in the garden and raise millions.
“So why not sing, spread some cheer and again raise money for our national heroes. NHS this one is for you!”
The Second World War veteran has become a national hero after raising over £22m for the health service by completing laps of his garden.
He has already reached his target of 100 laps before his 100th birthday on 30 April but has pledged to keep walking for as long as people keep donating to his appeal.
He smashed his original target of £1,000, leading to calls for him to be knighted.
Responding online to the Change.org petition, Number 10 said Prime Minister Boris Johnson “will certainly be looking at ways to recognise Tom for his heroic efforts”.
The petition has received more than 600,000 signatures.
Royalty have also noted Captain Moore’s efforts, with the Duke of Cambridge and Duchess of Cornwall making an undisclosed donation to his appeal and writing to him personally.
Money raised will pay for care packs for staff, electronic devices for patients to keep in touch with family members and support groups for those recovering from coronavirus.
Captain Moore has achieved the highest total raised by an individual on JustGiving.
Originally from Keighley in West Yorkshire, Captain Moore trained as a civil engineer before enlisting in the Army for the Second World War, rising to captain and serving in India and Burma.