Michael Morpurgo awarded historic title
20th December 2010
Former children's laureate Michael Morpurgo has been given a historic title - Freeman of the Borough of West Devon.
West Devon Borough Council gave the honour to the author, whose children's books include War Horse, Toro! Toro! and Private Peaceful, in recognition of his work to promote the value of rural life.
The council noted that Morpurgo and his wife Clare launched the Farms For City Children charity in 1976 to allow youngsters to have the experience of living and working on a farm for one week.
John Hockridge, mayor of West Devon, commented: 'Michael and Clare Morpurgo and their team have achieved a remarkable experience for inner city children, introducing them to our rural way of life.'
In addition, the local authority pointed out that the author brought further attention to rural life when it was confirmed that the big screen adaptation of War Horse will be filmed in the West Devon village of Sheepstor.
This month, it was announced that the stage adaptation of Private Peaceful will tour the UK's theatres in 2011.