To the memory of the fallen
And the future of the living
News and Events Page updated 9th July 2016
To find out who to contact in your area please see the list of Branches on our branch information page.
Welcome to The Royal British Legion in Wiltshire
We are to administer and support the delivery of welfare services and the membership and fundraising activities of the Legion's branches and clubs throughout Wiltshire.
Membership of The Royal British Legion is available to all adults, not just members or ex-members of the forces and we always welcome new members. Drop into your local branch or click here to find out how you can join.
The New DG Charles Byrne Video
You may have seen Charles Byrne at our Wiltshire conference in 2014. He has just taken over as Director General and has shared views on how he sees the Royal British Legion going forward.
It’s Charles’ first week as our new Director General. We caught up with Charles last week and asked him to share his views on his new role, the organisation and the future.
You can watch this short film here.
Salisbury Band of the Royal British Legion Concert
On Saturday 30.7.16 Salisbury City Band of The Royal British Legion were proud to be asked to support St Thomas's Church's Organ Appeal by providing a concert of British and American music. We were delighted to see so many people supporting the second concert of the series. The audience favourite seemed to be 'My Fair Lady'. A sing-along for this is a real possibility!
The band had played in Old George Mall earlier that morning to a very appreciative audience. At the end of the concert Wendy Jobbins, our principal cornet, was presented with the Conductor's award by Edward McDermott.
We now have a full band but would welcome some additional brass, particularly cornets/trumpets.
Recent news from the band:
We have just received notice from Wendy Oliver of some joint fund raising concerts coming up. First one is this weekend the 23rd of July.
A poster is available to print here.
It is in aid of the Poppy Appeal and St Thomas’s Organ Appeal. Entrance is free but there is a retiring collection.
Immediately prior to this, at about 10am we shall be playing to shoppers in Old George Mall. Anyone who is available to act as collectors at this venue would be much appreciated. There is usually a Coffee Morning in the Church in the morning. It is well worth a visit.
This is the second in a series of concerts in aid of the newly launched Organ Appeal. The first is this Saturday – 23rd July at 12.15pm organised by the Director of Music – John Dempster. It includes Music from the Shows.
The last concert is the second week in September so maybe you could make a regular Saturday lunchtime date. Bring your sandwiches and eat them in the shade of this historic building.
Wendy Oliver ALCM, LTCL
Salisbury City Band of The Royal British Legion
RBL Womens Section Changes. Your Questions and Information
You will have seen in the February Circular that Women’s Section is to become a District of the RBL. This decision has caused quite a lot of disquiet and many letters have been sent to Head Office. Head Office have now issued a document listing questions and Head Office answers which explains the background to the decision and how Womens Section will run in the future. Click HERE to go directly to the document.
Statement on The Royal British Legion Women’s Section
The Board of Trustees of The Royal British Legion met on 16th June 2016. One of the agenda items concerned the future of the Royal British Legion Women’s Section. The discussion on this topic was comprehensive and frank, with ample time given to digest the feedback from both 2016 Annual Conferences and the Central Committee meetings.
The Trustees agreed that it still remained vitally important to continue to integrate the Women’s Section into the Legion to comply with charity regulation and governance arrangements. However, they also felt that the timescales and the precise nature of the integration terms needed to be given greater consideration. The full wording of the resolution of the Board of Trustees is appended below the signature block.
The Trustees have therefore asked that, by 1st October 2016, the detailed issues brought about by the proposed integration are agreed and that we arrive at that point through a joint team representing the RBL and members of the Women’s Section. Once the issues are agreed we will work together to implement the integration by 1st October 2017.
We are very happy to report that we also have the support of the Central Committee on this proposal which was discussed at their 22nd June committee meeting.
The next step will be to appoint the joint team and to ensure that they have the opportunity to consult as necessary to arrive at a mutually agreeable solution.
We will keep you updated as things progress.
Terry Whittles Marilyn Humphry
1.0 Taking in to consideration the Board of Trustees’ Resolution dated 10th December 2015
1.1 The Board of Trustees FURTHER RESOLVES:
1.1.1 To continue to formally and fully integrate the Women’s Section in to the regular structure of the Royal British Legion;
1.1.2 That a transition process detailing the issues to be resolved is developed by Two (2) appointees of the Women’s Section Chairman and Two (2) appointees of the Royal British Legion Chairman by no later than 30th September 2016; and
1.1.3 That the integration process is completed by 30th September 2017 notwithstanding that some transitional arrangements may be implemented beyond 30th September 2017.
Somme 100 Commemorations
The Battle of the Somme is synonymous with our memory of the First World War. The infamous first day remains the bloodiest day in the British Army’s history, involving sixty-thousand casualties, twenty-thousand of whom were killed.
Commemorations will be taking place between 30 June and 18 November to mark the centenary of the 141 days of the battle’s duration.
More information and a different toolkit will be communicated separately for Somme 100 by mid-April. The Somme 100 toolkit will be available both digitally and for order by post.
We really hope that with this support you will be able to run an event that best suits your community.
If you have any questions, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Commemorative pins can be obtained from our county fund raiser Fiona Dobson. Contact the Cottage for how to get hold of them
Ron Clark, Secretary of East Knoyle Semley and Sedgehill branch sent in some photos of the Somme Memorial Service held in the village and they can be viewed here
The parade and service of Rededication took place on the 12th June and was well received by all. A few photographs from the event are available here
As you will be aware, one of the Legion’s priority campaign's has been around compensation awards for veterans diagnosed with Mesothelioma.
It is with much pleasure that I write to inform you that the Government announced yesterday that legislation will be amended in April 2016 to enable all veterans diagnosed with Mesothelioma as a result of Service the choice between receiving a traditional War Pension or £140,000 in tax-free lump sum compensation, regardless of age at diagnosis. The average civilian compensation award under the Government’s Diffuse Mesothelioma Scheme is around £122,000.
Whilst the law won’t be amended until April, the Ministry of Defence has indicated that payments will be backdated to the date of the Government’s announcement, which was at yesterday’s meeting of the Central Advisory Committee. From 16 December, all veterans diagnosed with Mesothelioma who submit a claim to Veterans UK will receive a traditional War Pension as normal for the period up until April 2016. After that date, should the claimant decide they would prefer to receive a lump sum payment, Veterans UK will arrange for this to happen, with the value of any War Pension already received being deducted from the final lump sum award. We understand that independent advice will be offered to all veteran Mesothelioma claimants to help them decide which payment option is right for them, given that War Pensions include survivor's benefits.
The Legion has long maintained that veterans should be compensated fairly for their suffering, and we commend the Government for taking steps to address this important issue. Whilst we welcome yesterday’s announcement, we do remain disappointed that around 60 veterans who are currently in receipt of a War Disablement Pension for Mesothelioma will be unable to apply for the new lump sum compensation award. This is on account of successive governments’ longstanding opposition to retrospection. The Legion has informed officials of our disappointment and has suggested that this particular group of veterans should be considered worthy of ‘special’ status within the terms of the Armed Forces Covenant, in light of both their limited life expectancy and the severity of their pain and suffering. We are pleased that the Government has indicated that it will review special arrangements for this small group of veterans, and we will continue to monitor developments closely.
The Legion estimates that the Government’s recent announcement will benefit veterans diagnosed with Mesothelioma by tens of millions of pounds over the lifetime of this issue, which is a sizeable sum in the present financial climate.
The Legion’s campaigns team would like to thank all of our members who championed this campaign locally or wrote to their MP about this important issue. We simply couldn’t have done this without you.
With best wishes for the New Year,
The Freedom Trail
During WW2 there were many routes out of occupied Europe that were taken by Allied Servicemen. One of them was through the Pyrenees from France into Spain. This route is now a route for the adventurous amongst youto take and retrace the steps of those that did it during the war. A trip itinerary can be found here along with a couple of pictures. Details of how to join the trip are in the itinerary for the 2017 trips.
Standard Bearers page update July 2016
A Great Way to Support the Poppy Appeal and get a great Tune too
Buy it or download it here
The latest County Circular has lots of news and events advertised in it this month.
Somme Memorial Event 2016
2016 marks the centenary of the Battle of the Somme. To mark this very special anniversary the Department of Culture Media and Sport and the French government have taken on the running of the commemorative event. This link will give you more details on how you can be involved and at the service on July 1st 2016
Rewards for Forces are offering discounted cinema tickets. See attached flyer
Wiltshire Riders Branch
Allen McIlvar, who runs the Wiltshire Riders Branch, has asked me to let you know that he is very happy to give a presentation about the Riders Branch to your Branch Meetings.
You can contract Allen via the County Office email address or follow this link
COUNTY POPPY APPEAL LAUNCHED
Click the Poppy Appeal Link on the left for details and some great photographs
Volunteering to Help
If you would like to do some voluntary work with the Legion please have a look at the following link. VOLUNTEERING TO HELP.
LATEST LEGION UPDATE now on the News and Events page
The Cottage Drop In dates Tidworth information available here
CAN YOU HELP PLEASE ?
We desperately need a Poppy Appeal Organiser in
Click HERE for details
The Legion and the Centenary
Details in a PDF file on the RBL Centenary Projects that will be updated throughout the year. Take a look and print a copy off for your use.
View our News & Events calendar for more information on what's happening.
Poppy Appeal Photo Gallery
Enjoy our photo gallery of all our fundraising efforts.
About The Royal British Legion
The Royal British Legion is the nation's leading Armed Forces charity providing care and support to all members of the British Armed Forces past and present and their families. It is also the national Custodian of Remembrance and safeguards the Military Covenant between the nation and its Armed Forces. It is best known for the annual Poppy Appeal and its emblem the red poppy.
Advice and Assistance
There are three ways for those needing our assistance to contact the RBL:
- The Knowledge Base which is accessed through the RBL website http://www.britishlegion.org.uk/can-we-help
- The Contact Centre (new free phone number: 0808 8028080) which is open from 8 am to 8 pm seven days a week.
- Face to face meeting with a Caseworker or Case Officer.
If the Knowledge Base does not answer the query, or if the individual does not have access to a computer, then the next port of call is the Contact Centre. This Centre is now working 7 days a week from 8am to 8pm. If the Contact Centre is not able to resolve the issue then it passes the details of the case to the Area Advice and Information Team Leader (AITL). The AITL will then pass the case onto the local Case Officer (CO) and they will allocate the case to a caseworker who will arrange to meet the person making the enquiry.
There are a number of opportunities for Volunteering roles and we especially need more volunteer caseworkers. If you are interested in volunteer work you can find a form of Expression of Interest at this link
If you would like to volunteer for one of these roles please complete the form and send it to Fi Hedges whose address is at the bottom of the form.
Alistair Maxwell Area Manager Somerset and Wiltshire
Fi Hedges Area Administrator
Laura Carey Area Advice and Information Team Leader
Vacant Case Officer 0808 802 8080
Isobel Thompson Advice & Information Officer 0808 802 8080
Sandra Long Case Officer,Tidworth/Salisbury/Warminster Area
Gemma Carter Advice and Information Officer, Tidworth, Salisbury/Warminster Area
Fi Dobson Community Fundraiser Wiltshire
Christopher Prestwich Membership Support Officer Wiltshire