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New Year’s Honours: Former world record holder and race director of London Marathon David Bedford honoured by Queen

Former long distance runner and race director of London Marathon, David Bedford, was made an OBE. Picture: Nigel Sutton Former long distance runner and race director of London Marathon, David Bedford, was made an OBE. Picture: Nigel Sutton

Tuesday, December 31, 2013
2:26 PM

A former world record holder has been honoured by being made an OBE for his charitable work as race director of the London Marathon.

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David Bedford, 64, who has lived in Hampstead all his life, beat the world record for the 10,000 metres in 1973 and ran in the 1972 Munich Olympics.

But after he retired from marathon running, he dedicated himself to charitable causes.

Over the course of 26 years working at the most famous long-distance race in the UK, the London Marathon, he helped raise tens of millions for charity.

Known for his bright red socks, shaggy hair and long moustache, Mr Bedford always cut a distinctive figure on the track and even now he is easy to spot when he goes for a jog on Hampstead Heath.

In 2004, he sued directory enquiries provider 118 118 for using his likeness in advertisements that featured two moustachioed marathon runners in red socks.

While Ofcom found the provider had used his image without permission, Mr Bedford was left to foot a £60,000 legal bill.

Mr Bedford, of East Heath Road, is currently chairman of the International Association of Athletics Federations‎Road Running Commission.

He becomes an OBE in the New Year Honours List for services to athletics and charitable fundraising.

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