Norfolk’s Chelsea Pensioner wins Britain’s Got Talent
PUBLISHED: 10:13 03 June 2019 | UPDATED: 10:27 03 June 2019
A Chelsea pensioner from Norfolk has won the Britain’s Got Talent Final.
Colin Thackery, 89, has won himself £250,000 and a spot on the Royal Variety Performance after his emotional performance of Love Changes Everything, which was dedicated to his late wife Joan.
The four judges gave Mr Thackery and the other Chelsea pensioners on stage a standing ovation.
After his performance Mr Thackery said: "I served my Queen for 25 years and to sing to her would be the end. I could die happy."
The judges enjoyed the performance, David Walliams said: "I just looked around then and what a magic moment. I think that tonight, you are unbeatable."
Former Strictly Come Dancing star Alesha Dixon said: "That was just magical. I respect you and you inspire me." While Amanda Holden said: "You served your country and tonight I hope they serve you."
The Korean War veteran, who used to live in Thorpe St Andrew, has been singing since he was eight years old, but after he met his Joan - who he married in 1950 - he said they sang together.
Mr Thackery met his wife during a soldier's dance and got married in 1950 during army leave, two weeks before he was sent to serve in Vietnam.
They reunited two years later, when Joan was shipped out to join him in Hong Kong and when the veteran retired the pair moved to Norfolk.
He said he was "astonished" to have won the ITV show.
"I don't know what to say," he told hosts Ant McPartlin and Declan Donnelly, as judge Simon Cowell saluted him.
"I'm stuck for words, for a change."
He was joined in the final by Thetford magician James Samuel whose group 4MG, have been dubbed 'the One Direction of magic'.
The other acts in the final were Libby and Charlie, who were given a wildcard place by the judges, as well as Dave and Finn, Siobhan Phillips, Kojo Anim, Ben Hart, X, Flakefleet Primary School choir, Jonathan Goodwin and Mark McMullan.
The show saw former winners Diversity perform a new dance routine, while Susan Boyle will duet with Michael Ball on A Million Dreams.