Mayor pays tribute to veterans' groups in Hunts
- Credit: KARL WEBB
On Saturday, May 15, I joined members of the Royal British Legion (RBL) to lay wreaths at the Huntingdon town centre memorial to commemorate the RBL’s centenary year.
With 25 years of service in the Royal Navy, I have always been proud of our serving and retired members of the armed forces, so this week, I am going to talk about three veterans’ groups supporting Huntingdon and the district.
You may be surprised to hear the Huntingdon branch of the RBL was founded on November 3, 1921. Huntingdon and District Branch of the Royal Naval Association (RNA) marked 40 year since commissioning in June 1981.
The Huntingdon, Wyton branch of the Royal Air Force Association (RAFA) were founded 78 years ago in 1943. In total, the three branches have been around for 218 years with their members providing support throughout our community.
What support do they provide? The most visible is the annual Remembrance Parade. RBL, RNA, and RAFA veterans take pride of place at the war memorial, they parade their branch standards and lay wreaths on behalf of those lives lost in the service of our country.
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Marching through town at the end of the service, with residents and visitors clapping us as we move through the town centre, has always filled me with pride at the love and affection shown for our contribution to the nation.
We also take part in the annual Armed Forces Day celebrations, military and national events such as VE Day, St George’s Day, Commonwealth Day, and so on.
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Veterans raise funds for local and national charities, you will see stalls at the Huntingdon Gala and Carnival, street collections, and in the lead up to Remembrance Day collecting donations for the annual poppy appeal.
Armed forces associations also look after the welfare of our veterans, and their families, through formal and informal social events, and by providing access to professional services.
If you or your family have served in the armed forces, look online for your local RBL, RNA, or RAFA branch or pop down and chat with us at the Huntingdon Gala at the Riverside in Huntingdon, on July 3. New members are always welcome.
To all our veterans out there, I thank you for your service.