Britain's tallest man certainly had the 'wow factor' for thrilled Padiham schoolchildren

Britain's tallest man left youngsters awestruck when he was the VIP guest at their school.

By Sue Plunkett
Tuesday, 15th March 2022, 12:38 pm

Paul Sturgess, who is an incredible 7ft 7 tall, greeted pupils as they arrived for morning assembly at Padiham Primary.

His visit had been kept secret from the children so it was a huge surprise for them, quite literally, when they walked into the school hall.

Office manager Jackie McInnes said: "All you could hear was the children saying 'wow' as they saw Paul for the first time.

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The tallest man in the UK Paul Sturgess shows off his basketball skills by balancing the ball on a pupils hand. Photo: Kelvin Stuttard

"He was giving high fives to all the staff and pupils and one boy said he would never wash his hand again."

A former professional basketball player, Paul was recruited to the Harlem Globetrotters in August 2011 and was the team's tallest ever player. After his sporting career ended he began working in the film industry and has appeared in Fantastic Beasts, Lord of The Rings and is due to appear in the new Avatar film.

A motivational speaker he also tours schools and runs basketball workshops with children to encourage youngsters to embrace who they are and feel confident in their own skin.

Jackie said: "Paul was fantastic with the children He showed them not to let feeling different hold you back from achieving anything you want in life.

Year 6 pupils from Padiham Primary School play basketball games organised by the tallest man in the UK Paul Sturgess. Photo: Kelvin Stuttard

"I am sure meeting Paul is something that will stay in their memories all their lives."

And Paul said he thoroughly enjoyed his first visit to Padiham.

He said: "Everyone has been so welcoming and full of smiles and the workshops were really high energy."

Year 6 pupils from Padiham Primary School with the UK's tallest man Paul Sturgess. Photo: Kelvin Stuttard