Service veterans will be recognised at special day


VETERANS around Bognor Regis will have their service to their country formally recognised at a ceremony later this year.

All personnel who served in the UK armed forces, either as a regular member or on national service, are eligible to receive the Veterans’ Badge.

This year’s Armed Forces Day in the town on June 22 will provide the chance for the badges to be presented.

One of the day’s organisers, David Hewings, said: “The badges are issued from the Ministry of Defence Service Personnel and Veterans’ Agency as a mark of the country’s gratitude for the valuable contribution made over the years by servicemen in preserving our way of life.”

Application forms are available from the RAFA Club in Waterloo Square from 11.30am to 11pm Mondays to Saturdays. Sunday closing is at 8pm.

The forms need to be returned to RAFA by May 24 if the veteran wishes to have the badge formally presented at Armed Forces Day so the application can be processed by the MoD.

“Should anyone have received their Veterans’ Badge in the post directly from the MoD and would like these to be formally presented, please leave them with the RAFA Club barman in a sealed envelope with their name, address and contact details on it, again by May 24,” said Mr Hewings.

This year’s Armed Forces Day will mark the role played by the country’s armed forces with an emphasis on the anniversaries of the 1914 start of the first world war and the D-Day landing in 1944, in which Bognor was on the front line.

“This includes the contribution by the cadet forces who have done a great job in nurturing the service personnel of the future,” Mr Hewings said.

Much of the action will be around Waterloo Square from 11am. A drumhead service will start the day followed by the presentation of medals and badges.

Mr Hewings said: “The afternoon will see displays by the cadet units and entertainment from the RAFA choir, jazz and skiffle bands, from the fabulous 1940s singer Amy Baker, plus stands and displays in The Veterans Village.”

A Spitfire, Harvard and Chinook should stage flypasts with a rescue exercise by the RNLI and Coastguard Agency out to sea.