Service veterans awarded badges

Mike Penning MP, front right, with veterans PNL-150308-135521001
Mike Penning MP, front right, with veterans PNL-150308-135521001

Hemel Hempstead MP Mike Penning presented veterans badges to six men and one woman who have served in HM Forces at a ceremony held in the Garden Room at The Bury in Queensway.

Major Bob Fisher, President, and Sue Rose of the Hemel Hempstead branch of the Royal British Legion were guests of honour.

Mr Penning said: “It is always a great honour for me to present these badges in recognition of the dedicated service given to our country by servicemen and women in war and in peacetime. As a former soldier myself, I wholeheartedly support this veterans badge initiative and the importance of recognising the debt we owe to our veterans.”

Also in attendance was Fred Brown who, as a veteran of the Arctic convoys, has recently received a commemorative medal from the Russian Government to mark ‘The 70th Anniversary of the Victory in the Great Patriotic War 1941­-1945’.

The convoys delivered supplies to the then Soviet ports of Archangel and Murmansk.

The horrendous conditions endured by those serving on the Arctic convoys led to Winston Churchill’s famous reference to it as “the worst journey in the world”.

Mr Penning added: “I welcome the recent decision by the Foreign Office to change the rules to allow British citizens to accept these medals from the Russian Government and it was great to meet up with Fred and his wife again.

“What an incredible man with an amazing story.”

The veterans badge scheme was introduced by the Ministry of Defence to recognise veterans for their service and to raise the profile of our armed forces.

To find out more about the veterans badges, which are available to all former service personnel, contact Mr Penning’s office on 01442 251126 .