Last visit to Shropshire for man who found fame in TV Covid interview

The daughter of a former army officer who became an unwitting worldwide television star when having his Covid jab has told of an emotional last journey he made to his ancestral home in Shropshire.

Martin Kenyon speaking to CNN’s Cyril Vanier about his experience in receiving the vaccine at Guy’s Hospital in London
Martin Kenyon speaking to CNN’s Cyril Vanier about his experience in receiving the vaccine at Guy’s Hospital in London

Martin Kenyon died peacefully aged 92 at home on Wednesday September 7, the day before Queen Elizabeth II passed away. Although he had lived most of his adult life in London, the former Welsh Fusilier and Old Etonian kept a home at Wentnor in the shadow of the Long Mynd and his parental home was at Lydbury North.

Mr Kenyon was interviewed on CNN in December 2020 outside Guy's Hospital where he had gone for a Covid jab on 'V-Day' and told the American reporter he'd turned up at the hospital but "couldn't damn well find anywhere to park my car so was late".

The clip went viral and he was interviewed on GMTV the next day when he asked Piers Morgan:"Who are You?"

Martin Kenyon with his family in Shropshire

Nina said they wanted to take him back to Shropshire, the county he loved and which loved him, before he died and said it was an emotional occasion.

She said: "My brother came over from North Wales and it was a poignant moment for us all as we knew it would probably be the last time he would see the home he loved.

"I think he knew it as well but one comfort is that it was fitting he would pass away peacefully at home the day before the Queen who he had met a number of times. He would have loved the significance of that."

Martin Kenyon at his home in Shropshire

In 2008 Nina's wedding in More, near Bishops Castle was attended by Archbishop Desmond Tutu, a friend of her fathers, who assisted the celebrant in front of more than 200 guests.

Archbishop Tutu met Mr Kenyon when he was studying at King's College London and the two were godfathers to their respective daughters.

Before he died, Mr Kenyon asked for his god-daughter and Archbishop Tutu's daughter Mpho to conduct the funeral service

Nina said: "He was incredibly well connected but not through rank or status or anything like that. He met Desmond Tutu when he was studying in London and they remained friends, as later did the families,

"One of the last things he asked for was for Mpho to conduct the service, saying he would be gone but he would like his god-daughter to see him off and he also stipulated it should be in Shropshire in the shadow of the Long Mynd, an area he loved."

The small funeral for family and friends will be held next week after the Queen's service on Monday,

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