It was a beautiful day for this year’s Remembrance Sunday services. I joined the Royal British Legion at Redruth in the morning, and then went on to Illogan in the afternoon. This year marks the centenary of the Battle of the Somme and Battle of Jutland, as well as the 25th anniversary of the Gulf War.
2016 saw twenty one Second World War veterans from across Cornwall being presented with the Légion d’honneur. The French Government has been awarding the Légion d’honneur to D-Day veterans from many different countries as a way of honouring and thanking those who fought and risked their lives to secure France’s liberation during the Second World War. The Légion d’honneur was established in 1802 by Napoléon Bonaparte and is France’s highest distinction and is awarded in recognition of both military and civilian merit.
However, we also have more recent scars from conflict. There is no doubt in my mind that the difficult operations in both Iraq and Afghanistan in recent years has made the public far more conscious of sacrifices made by our armed forces. We owe those who have given up so much at such a young age all the support they need to help them build their lives back, especially those who suffered life changing injuries during those terrible conflicts. Charities such as Help for Heroes, the Army Benevolent Fund and the Royal British Legion do just that, helping people recover not just from the physical but also mental difficulties that come from being exposed to war.
It was good to see such a strong attendance from all the various Cadet groups, Scouts and Brownies. It is great to see these movements going from strength to strength, and the young people that represent them always do us proud.