Thousands of birthday cards have been sent to Captain Tom Moore as he turns 100

Over 120,000 birthday cards have been sent by well-wishers from around the world to NHS fundraising hero Captain Tom Moore.

Captain Tom's birthday cards are being arranged at Bedford School

It was never going to be a low-key birthday, despite the coronavirus lockdown.

But when Captain Tom Moore settles down to open his cards on Thursday, it may take him some time.

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Such is the global admiration for the Keighley-born former soldier who will be 100 this week, that he has so far received 120,000 cards - and the number is still rising.

Pictured is Captain Tom’s grandson Benjie in the Great Hall of Bedford School, where the cards sent from around the world are being opened and displayed by staff.

It comes as Captain Tom’s appeal has topped £29million raised by him walking laps of his garden in Bedfordshire, and it may pass £30million today.

Earlier Prime Minister Boris Johnson praised the fundraiser.

“If we, as a country, can show the same spirit of optimism and energy shown by Captain Tom Moore who turns 100 this week, if we can show the same spirit of unity and determination as we have all shown in the past six weeks, then I have absolutely no doubt that we will beat it together,” he said.

“We will come through this all the faster and the United Kingdom will emerge stronger than ever before.”

In another tribute to Captain Tom, who has captured the national imagination and made international headlines, all mail sent from Monday will be stamped with a special postmark in his honour.

The Royal Mail postmark, which will be applied to all stamped post between April 26 and May 1, reads: “Happy 100th Birthday Captain Thomas Moore NHS fundraising hero 30th April 2020.”