Islington bus stab victim “overwhelmed” by London 2012 Olympic closing ceremony

16:32 15 August 2012

Tim Smits with his award and Olympic ticket

Tim Smits with his award and Olympic ticket


Bus have-a-go hero Tim Smits said he was “overwhelmed and a little teary” watching Sunday’s Olympics closing ceremony – which he was given tickets to after being stabbed protecting passengers from thugs.

Tim, 33, was knifed twice and hospitalised last year after standing up to a gang who were abusing elderly women on a bus.

Mr Smits was nominated by the Gazette for Islington Council’s Community Hero scheme, which gave Olympic tickets to 45 residents who had made the borough a better place, and scooped a seat for the closing ceremony on Sunday.

He said: “I’m still recovering from it to be honest – it was absolutely incredible. I have never been to anything like it in my life, it was so good.

“I was still buzzing when I came home afterwards, so I watched some of it back to see what it was like on TV and it really didn’t do it justice.

“It is seriously next-level stuff – the choreography and the technology were fantastic.”

He added: “My favourite part was the opening singer [Emeli Sandé]. She was singing acapella and her voice coupled with the visuals of the amazing feats by all the athletes blew me away.

“While she was singing I started off thinking how I got to be sitting there and it was a pretty overwhelming feeling – I got quite teary.”

Australian-born Mr Smits feels the British put on a show to remember.

“London should be very proud of the way the Games have gone, I reckon. Everything has been done well and the whole country got behind the athletes.

“Having 80,000 people screaming for you to win must help you on the back straight.

“With the funding and the infrastructure, everything is in place for exciting times for Britain’s competitors – I think they will get better.

“I have had a ball watching the Olympics over the last two weeks and Sunday night just topped it off.”

Mr Smits sat next to another Gazette-nominated hero, Tony Shepherd, 49.

He won a ticket after trying to rescue three-year-old Brandon Frederick from a burning building in Coleman Fields last year.

He broke a window to try to get the boy out but the blaze was too fierce for him to go inside.

Instead he directed firefighters to where Brandon was.


Latest News Stories

Former Dragons' Den star Doug Richard arrives at the Old Bailey, London, for a plea and case management hearing after he was accused of child sex charges. Picture: Yui Mok/PA Wire

A former Dragons’ Den star from Islington this morning denied paying a 13-year-old girl for sex after meeting her on a “Sugar Daddy” website.

London Ambulance Service has been recommended for special measures following a CQC report

A damning report by health inspectors has revealed a culture of “harassment and bullying” in London’s ambulance service and called for it to be placed into special measures.

Cllr Andy Hull

Jobs will be lost as a result of the budget cuts announced in Wednesday’s Spending Review, a councillor has said.

Yesterday, 15:52
Ashley Walters at the launch of the Radio 1 and 1Xtra Academy at Stoke Newington School in 2012. Picture: Carmen Valino

Rapper and actor Ashley Walters will appear at crown court over two accusations of threatening behaviour and one of racially aggravated harassment in Upper Street’s Hilton Hotel on May 3.

Yesterday, 12:49
Cllr Richard Watts

More than 1,000 of Islington’s unemployed have found jobs in the last year, thanks to a council-led scheme.

Yesterday, 10:48
Mélanie Lambert works at Le Sacré Coeur restaurant in Islington

A French waitress working in Islington says she is trying to stay strong after two of her friends were killed in the Paris terror attacks.

Yesterday, 09:00
The attack occured on the junction of Northdown Street and Pentonville Road. Picture: Google Street View

Crimestoppers and BT Openreach have launched an appeal for information after damage to a telecommunications network in King’s Cross left nearby businesses and homes without telephone and broadband services.

Most read news


MAC Makeup

MAC are renowned for their flawless, fabulous make up that is used worldwide by the stars. You too can have the chance to have the perfect makeup to suit your needs with £1,000 to spend on all the glam goodies you like!


You are never far from an Argos, wherever in the country you may be. They are like a magical cavern where whatever you need they seem to have it out the back behind the counter. So why not put them to the test with this great MyOffers competition to win £1000 to spend in-store.

Digital Edition

Read the Islington Gazette e-edition today E-edition
Family Notices 24

Local business directory

Our trusted business finder