A REFORMED East End gangster visited Saint Augustine’s High School in Billington to give a talk to students.

John Pridmore travels the globe talking about how he turned his life around, and the From Gangland to Promised Land author gave a speech to pupils from Years Nine, 10 and 11.

A school spokesman said: “At 6ft 6in, burly and bald, John had the kind of presence that made everyone stop and listen.”

He was brought up in London, dabbled in crime and ended up in borstal.

By his 20s he was part of the criminal underworld and violence was a way of life.

After dedicating his life to Christianity, John has spoken to more than a million people and has met the Pope, and Mother Teresa.

He now lives in a religious community in County Leitrim in Ireland.