A FORMER St Laurence pupil has also been given a British Empire Medal in the New Year Honours for his services to dance and to charity.

Benjamin David Hammond, 39, now lives in London and runs the Post-graduate Certification of Education courses at the Institute of Education.

Four years ago, the flamboyant fundraiser danced Britain for Burma from John O’Groats to Land’s End in a bright neon yellow and green tutu, to raise awareness of the oppression in Burma.

Along the way, Ben was hit by an alleged drunk driver near Polsham in Somerset and he ended up in hospital with concussion and cuts and bruises.

His support rider Alice Tanswell suffered minor injuries. They were both discharged after treatment and were able to complete the 874-mile challenge.

In the process, he raised more than £45,000 to support the work of Amnesty International, the Burma Campaign UK and LearnBurma.

In 2011, Mr Hammond became the first person to dance the entire 26-mile length of the London Marathon, taking eight hours and 50 minutes to complete the course, and finishing 34,692nd.

His challenges have raised more than £100,000 and have included dancing non-stop for five and a half days for the World’s Longest Dance.

Mr Hammond has also completed a dancing Tour of Britain, a dance across America and has danced at the Glastonbury Festival. His dancing has led to him twice being hospitalised with injury or exhaustion.

His mother, Judith Hammond, who still lives in Bradford on Avon, said: “He is very pleased and appreciates the award but he doesn’t want to blow his own trumpet.”