Five times Olympic Gold Medallist and professional corn flakes box model Sir Steve Redgrave has checked into a private hospital where he will undergo surgery this week to have his medals removed. The first medal appeared on his chest in 1984, with more appearing at regular intervals until the last one in 2000, whereupon they stopped.
Said Redgrave, ‘I’ve put up with it for a long time. They are a part of me now. But long ago it got to the point where the medals were hampering my daily life.
‘Something had to be done. Just going to the shops is a battle as I’ll get people shouting at me, hurtful, spiteful things, like ‘Look! There goes Mr Jingle Jangle Tambourine Man.’ They obviously have no idea what it’s like. Well after 30 years of it I’ve had enough.’
Because of the high degree of risk in the procedure – the plan is to separate his chest from all five medals in one go – a second operation to remove a Union Jack, which is stuck to his back and has spread down his arms, has been postponed until next year.