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EDITIONS
Wednesday, 27 November, 2002, 17:14 GMT
Robin Hood misses top spot
William Booth
William Booth was voted the greatest 'Nottinghamian'
Nottingham may be world famous for its association with Robin Hood but according to an online vote he is not the city's greatest son.

The legendary outlaw who robbed from the rich to give to the poor was beaten into second place by William Booth, who began the Salvation Army.

Although Robin Hood took an early lead, a late surge in votes for Booth gave the Victorian reformer a massive win.

The poll was carried out by BBC Nottingham Online to coincide with BBC's vote to find the Greatest Briton, which was won on Sunday by Winston Churchill.

Robin shock

Nigel Bell, BBCi producer, said: "Two days before closing, Robin Hood had a healthy lead of 40%.

"Then suddenly the William Booth votes came flooding in.

"Whether this was because the vote was close to the end and there was a touch of divine intervention, we can only guess at.


People like the work that we do which is probably why he won and William Booth is a proper person

Chris Sands, Salvation Army
"We were very surprised.

"We thought Robin Hood, even though there are question marks over his actual existence, was the figure people in Nottingham would associate with."

Booth was born in Nottingham in 1829 and began preaching in the city when he was about 26-years-old.

Global impact

After moving to London, his volunteer army, who try to save the souls of those missed by the church, became known as the Salvation Army in 1878.

When he died in August 1912, more than 150,000 mourners attended his funeral.

Chris Sands, director of public relations for the Salvation Army, said: "He made an impact not just in Nottingham but in the UK and across the whole world.

"People like the work that we do which is probably why he won and William Booth is a proper person."

Other great Nottinghamians were Sir Jesse Boot, DH Lawrence, Su Pollard, Watson Fothergill, Lord Byron, Torvill & Dean, Alan Sillitoe and Harold Larwood.


Click here to go to Nottingham
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24 Nov 02 | TV and Radio
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