Historical Events Set to be Remembered in Special Way
The Mayor of South Tyneside is calling on veterans to take part in a special programme of national remembrance events to mark the 75th anniversary of Victory in Europe (VE Day) and Victory in Japan (VJ Day).
The Royal British Legion is inviting veterans to remember the sacrifice made by men and women during the Second World War in a unique way.
The initiative is being supported by the Mayor of South Tyneside, Councillor Norman Dick and Joe Mills of NAAFI Break, who are veterans themselves, as well as the Armed Forces Forum which helps ex-service men and women, serving officers and their families get the support they need.
The Legion plans to host 750 veterans from across the UK, each accompanied by a nominated companion, to attend the commemorative VE Day events taking place in Central London on the early Bank Holiday Monday.
The invitation includes transport, meals and accommodation for both the veteran and their nominated companion. Attendees will travel to London on Thursday 7 May and return on Sunday 10 May.
The UK's VJ Day national event will take place at the National Memorial Arboretum on Saturday 15 August. The event will form part of a three-day public programme of events which will include a national service of Remembrance. The Royal British Legion will be offering travel and accommodation for all veterans who wish to attend.
They will also be funding the travel and accommodation costs for a series of tours for veterans of the Asia-Pacific campaign to key commemorative and Commonwealth War Grave Commissions' sites across South East Asia. The destinations include:
Kohima, North East India
National Memorial Arboretum
Travel and accommodation will also be provided for the veteran's nominated companion as well as a comprehensive Legion care support group to support the veterans.
The Mayor said: "This is a fantastic opportunity for those involved in the Second World War to reflect on the significance of these victorious days and the impact they had on the history and future of our country.
"We are encouraging applications from all those who contributed to Victory in Europe and Victory in Japan 75 years ago. This includes spouses and civilians from reserved occupations across the UK and Commonwealth.
"This programme has been developed with the kind support of a broad range of related UK veteran associations - it is important that as many people as possible get the opportunity to remember and honour our heroes of the Second World War."
The deadline for nominations is Friday 7 February.
Chair of the Armed Forces Forum, Councillor Ed Malcolm, said: "This is a laudable initiative and I hope as many people from South Tyneside as possible take up this great opportunity.
"The commemorations for both events will be extremely poignant and give emphasis on the scale of the service made by both men and women of the Second World War generation."
To find out more about this unique opportunity, please follow the links below: