Astronaut to be given the freedom of Chichester

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ASTRONAUT Tim Peake will be offered the freedom of the City of Chichester.

An invitation will be delivered to the International Space Station through the European Space Agency to ask if Major Peake will accept the honour when he returns from his six-month space mission.

Chichester city councillors voted to confer the Freedom of the City upon the Westbourne astronaut.

Town clerk Rodney Duggua said: ‘It is the highest honour the city council can bestow, and the local government equivalent of an investiture.’

Former Chichester High School for Boys pupil Major Peake is the first British-born European Space Agency astronaut to live aboard the space station and in January became the first Briton to take part in a space walk.

Mayor of Chichester, Peter Budge, said: ‘We hope that Major Peake will accept this honour but I am sure his diary will be very full well when he returns to planet earth so we will not know for a while when we can present him with the Freedom Scroll and sign the Roll of Freedom holders.

‘However, we do hope to ensure that as many citizens as possible will be able to attend the ceremony.’