A Knighthood for Bruce Dickinson
Honours and Appointments Secretariat, Cabinet Office
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Iron Maiden are one of the biggest bands ever to come out of Great Britain and are a national institution. In 2008, Iron Maiden were the second highest-earning British band of any genre, beaten only by the Police who had embarked on a highly-profitable reunion tour. They earned more than bands such as Coldplay, Take That, Radiohead and Oasis, despite not having a new album out to promote, and were bestowed with a Brit award for "Best Live Act" for their Somewhere Back In Time tour.
The band has numerous platinum and gold records to their name, with three of their albums (The Number of The Beast, Seventh Son of a Seventh Son and Fear of the Dark) reaching number 1 in the UK charts. The band also recieved an Ivor Novello award for lifetime achievement in 2000. Despite this, the band are largely ignored by the British press, but are worshipped by their large following of fans all over the world, in places as far-flung as Singapore, New Zealand, India and Costa Rica.
Iron Maiden have an undeniable charm which is loved by people from all walks of life, and achieve the near-impossible task of uniting every single fan of heavy metal, from casual listeners to anti-mainstream underground fans, in appreciation. No other band is able to inspire such loyalty and devotion in the heavy metal community. An example of this would be Iron Maiden's ability to sell out Twickenham stadium last year, as well as their last UK tour selling out entirely within 2 days.
However, there is far more to Bruce Dickinson than just Iron Maiden. He is also a fully-qualified airline pilot. He has regularly manned the controls of the band's private jet when they have recently went on tour, carrying the band and their large pile of equipment from gig to gig, and in his downtime, he is a pilot for Astraeus Airlines. Also, he has regularly used his flying skills for the benefit of others less fortunate, in times of need. During the Israel/Hezbollah conflict in Lebanon in 2007, Bruce personally flew out to the Lebanon to help bring 200 UK citizens home safely. In 2008, he helped fly home a group of RAF pilots from Afghanistan. He also helped Glasgow Rangers football club by flying them out to Israel for their UEFA Cup match against Hapoel Tel-Aviv in 2007 and, when XL Airlines went into administration, he personally flew out to Egypt to help bring home people who were stranded after their XL flights had been cancelled. He is also a fierce supporter of the Vulcan Trust fund, who's aim is to preserve and protect AVRO Vulcan G-VLCN (XH558), a British warplane, as well as display the aircraft at public events and to advance the general public's education of the plane, while preserving other timeless British military aircraft.
Bruce is also a champion fencer who is world-reknowned, and was once ranked number 7 in the British rankings, with his own fencing equipment company, named Duellist. He also presents a very popular "Rock Show" on the BBC Radio station 6 Music, which is one of 6 Music's most popular shows, as well as the BBC Radio 2 serial "Masters of Rock". He has presented 2 television series, "Flying Heavy Metal" and "Bruce Dickinson's Guide to Spontaneous Combustion", as well as guesting on Discovery Channel shows about tanks and trains. He has also had several small acting roles in productions such as "Dope Opera", "The Paradise Club" and the Channel 4 panel show "Space Cadets", as well as written the script for, and starred in a minor role, his own feature film "Chemical Wedding". In addition to all this, he has found the ability to even write two highly acclaimed books, "The Adventures of Lord Iffy Boatrace" and its sequel, "The Missionary Position". He is also a major in History from Queen Mary's College, London.
Bruce Dickinson's music in Iron Maiden and his solo albums has inspired millions of people around the world and given them hope in times of need. His feats as an airline pilot, helping people with no gain for himself, and his involvement in a trust fund designed in restoring vital pieces of British history are something which, in themselves, should be rewarded and appluaded. His achievements in the sport of Fencing are vast and great, and his accomplishments in the fields of television, radio, film and literature are greatly acclaimed as well. The most astonishing thing is that all of this has been done in a manner belittling his rock star status. Bruce Dickinson is a family man, who has never lost his roots as the son of a mechanic and a shoe-shop worker in Worksop, and does not indulge in the hedonistic excess of his peers such as Mick Jagger, but would rather be with his wife and three children. He rarely drinks, due to his duties as a pilot, limiting himself to the odd pint down his local with his friends, and never takes drugs. Bruce Dickinson is a credit to this fair nation and embodies a set of ideals which should be appluded and respected. The youth of today would do themselves good to look up to him, and if there is anybody who deserves to be decorated with a knighthood, it is Bruce Dickinson.