Meet the magician who cheers up sick children at their bedside in hospital.

Adam Templeton, 49, from St Albans, has worked with the charity initiative Empathy Project for two years providing training sessions to magicians to help them entertain children in the wards.

But since has given up some of his own time to help anxious or distressed children at hospitals in Watford and Stevenage.

The project began in October 2017 to enable young people in Hertfordshire to take part in an innovative project which allows them to support other young people in A&E.

Mr Templeton said: “After I had completed supporting the volunteers, I felt that I could give up more of my time to continue to help in some small ways to those who were unfortunate enough to end up in A&E with children.

“I have met families who have been waiting literally for hours and although I can’t get them seen any sooner it is possible that what I do helps time fly far more quickly.”

Mr Templeton hopes to continue helping the project in the future whether that’s through his own work at the hospitals or helping other magicians to put a smile on children’s faces.

He said: “It is lovely to help distract kids from the here and now. It’s always great fun when a young child or a teenager forgets themselves for a moment and they try to comprehend the trick they have just seen.

“It almost always ends with laughter, but it can be hard when you talk to children who are in pain.

“But they usually enjoy sharing their story and if I can help them forget about their worries for a moment or two then it is all worth-while.”

When told about the award Mr Templeton said: “I don’t really consider myself a community hero although I’m flattered to be considered as one.

“The real hero for me is Debi Roberts, who created and set up the Empathy Project. Secondly, all the families who wait patiently and finally the doctors and nurses who treat those who are in need.”