Heavy metal singer Ozzy Osbourne received a hero's welcome in Birmingham as he returned to his native city to inaugurate a tram. A new Midland Metro tram was named in honour of the Black Sabbath frontman and the 67-year-old made sure he was there for the first ride.
Greeted by hundreds of fans, he arrived in Birmingham this morning (26 May) to board the pink tram for its first journey to New Street station. "It's a great honour to have a new tram named after me, I'm proud to be a Brummie and this means so much," he said, unveiling the tram.
The singer posed for photos with the conductor and fans as he marveled at the tram that bears his name. In an interview with BBC news the Aston-raised music star said that it brought back childhood memories. "When I was a kid there were trams in Birmingham. And I always wondered why they stopped them. It's a clean way of transport," he explained.
Reflecting on his own remarkable career that took him from Birmingham to LA he said it had been "an incredible journey," adding that he remains true to his Birmingham roots: "Once a Brummie, always a Brummie. Every time I come it takes me a minute to guess where I am. I go by set landmarks. The Church at Aston, Aston Villa football ground. It's great."
The Crazy Rain singer also paid a surprise visit to Birmingham Children's Hospital. Lending his support to the charity's £3.65 million Star Appeal to build the UK's first Rare Diseases Centre for children he revealed that the hospital was close to his heart.
"My son Louis was in Birmingham Children's Hospital for quite a while as a child and the staff took such good care of him, something which I will always remember," he told the Birmingham Mail.
"They do amazing work for kids and I'm really pleased to drop in and once again show my support for the Star Appeal — it'll be a national centre that will help families not only in my hometown, but also across the country."
Yvonne Millard, Head of Nursing at Birmingham Children's Hospital, added: "It was such an honour to welcome the legend that is Ozzy Osbourne to our hospital. We are very proud that our new Rare Diseases Centre will improve the lives of thousands of families from across the UK and to have such a big star as Ozzy supporting it is just fantastic and a real boost for the appeal. It was a brilliant afternoon that helped put smiles on a lot of faces."
It was a day of fond reminisces for the star, and welcome respite for the Prince of Darkness, who of late has been making headlines for his alleged affair with his hair stylist Michelle Pugh and his subsequent marital breakdown.
On 8 May, the couple's spokesman, Gary Farrow, confirmed that the rocker was no longer at the marital home and is staying at a hotel. Hinting at his alleged infidelity, his wife and manager of 33 years, Sharon Osbourne revealed on her own daytime series The Talk, that she had kicked her husband out of the home they shared.
"I'm doing great," she said to the audience. "I really, really am. I honestly am empowered and I have found this inner strength. I can handle this. I honestly at this point today have no idea what I'm doing with the rest of my life," she explained. "I just need to time to think about myself, and what do I want for the rest of my life. [I'm] getting to the last chapter of my life. I really want to think carefully about where I want to go ... because I'm 63 years of age, and I can't keep living like this."
While Sharon was said to be in talks with lawyers to commence divorce proceedings, the pair were later seen together, prompting reports that she might be considering forgiving him for his alleged indiscretion as they approach their 34th wedding anniversary.
Daughter Kelly Osbourne was, however considerably less forgiving, posting a tweet in which she advertised the rather personal services of the singer's alleged mistress with her mobile number. Sharon reacted to the tweet saying simply her daughter has "the best sense of humor ever."