Bosses of the new Pelsall branch of the Royal British Legion today revealed it is going from strength to strength and a new welfare service has been launched to help former and serving soldiers.
It was formed a year ago and believed to be the first new branch of the Legion in the UK for more than a decade.
The branch will also take a step forward next month when its standard is dedicated in a church ceremony, allowing it to be used for future events. Chairwoman Karen Clifft said Pelsall was looking to expand with new members and hopes to welcome its first youth members this year.
She said: “We are very excited to launch our welfare section for those who have been in the armed services and need any help, which could be anything from adaptations to their home or a befriending service if people are lonely. We know there’s a lot of old soldiers in Pelsall who may find it useful. There may also be younger people leaving the forces that may need help.”
She said members were also excited that a dedication ceremony for the branch and its standard had been arranged at St Michael and All Angels Church in Pelsall on April 28 at 3pm.
Almost 100 guests have been invited to the event.
Mrs Clifft said: “The service will be about an hour long. We have invited guests who have supported us over the last year, and it will be a chance for us to thank them.
“We never expected the branch to be so well received when it formed. It shows the community do care and will come together to help.
“We cannot use the standard until it has been blessed so we will be able to take it to any events we go to afterwards. It’s an exciting time for us. We now have around 20 members but we are on a recruitment drive. We haven’t got any younger members and we want to try and get the support of younger people so they can carry it on.”
The branch has also raised more than £1,700 for the Poppy Appeal since last year.
This year, the branch has already lined up events that members will be attending, including the Pelsall Music Festival and Pelsall Carnival.
They are also hoping to organise an event for Armed Forces Day in June. The branch will hold its next meeting at Pelsall Labour Club, in Church Road, on Thursday at 7.30pm.
New members are welcome to attend or call Mrs Clifft on 01922 682031 for more information.
For welfare help, call secretary Alison Vaughan on 01922 682246.