Beer revives Royal British Legion branch after 40 years

PUBLISHED: 17:30 29 August 2017

Marine Sam White with George Bastone at the launch of Beer's Royal British Legion. Ref shb 34 17TI 9496. Picture: Terry Ife

Marine Sam White with George Bastone at the launch of Beer's Royal British Legion. Ref shb 34 17TI 9496. Picture: Terry Ife

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Beer has revived its branch of the Royal British Legion after more than 40 years.

George Bastone cuts the cake with Les Andrews at the launch of Beer's Royal British Legion. Ref shb 34 17TI 9507. Picture: Terry IfeGeorge Bastone cuts the cake with Les Andrews at the launch of Beer's Royal British Legion. Ref shb 34 17TI 9507. Picture: Terry Ife

The branch closed its doors in 1972, with its ladies section winding up last year due to lack of members.

The revived group opened on Saturday, August 19, with members of the community gathering for its launch at Beer Congregational Church Hall.

Burma Star veteran George Bastone declared the branch open. In the afternoon a small service was held at Pecorama.

Les Andrews, chairman of the branch, said: “We shall do all the memorial services and we shall try to help ex-servicemen.”

George Bastone cuts the ribbon at the launch of Beer's Royal British Legion. Ref shb 34 17TI 9504. Picture: Terry IfeGeorge Bastone cuts the ribbon at the launch of Beer's Royal British Legion. Ref shb 34 17TI 9504. Picture: Terry Ife

Currently the branch has 23 members and meets monthly.

In the congregational hall, historian Richard Scott had prepared a display on the legion and about the soldiers in Beer who died in the Battle of Passchendaele.

Members are trying to raise £1,000 before Remembrance Sunday to purchase a standard for the branch. The standard will need to be purchased in advance to allow the legion to carry out a rededication ceremony in the church.

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