The great and good of Hounslow gathered at the Civic Centre yesterday to welcome the latest Victoria Cross medal holder to move to the borough.

The arrival of a Ghurka war hero Lachhiman Gurung VC means the borough has the unique honour of being the only authority in the country to be home to two living VC holders.

Council leader Peter Thompson said: "It is an honour and source of great pride for Hounslow to have these real heroes living here."

"One of the strengths of this borough is that we have people from all over the world who have made it their home and I am sure that your small but industrious community will contribute to creating with us a stronger and more united borough."

Mr Gurung was officially welcomed at a ceremony in the council chamber by the Mayor, Genevieve Hibbs. He joins Tul Bahadur Pun VC, who has lived in Hounslow for several years.
 
Actress Joanna Lumley, who has been championing Gurkha's rights, sent a message of support.

"Hounslow is setting a grand example by this generous gesture, so richly deserved by a faithful friend and a gallant soldier whose bravery is immeasurable," she said.

"Have a wonderful day as you welcome a legend in your midst."

For more on VC Gurung's incredible story and pictures from the ceremony see next week's Chronicle