Big Breakfast 23 Success in Weston

Another Big Breakfast took place last Saturday at Baytree Garden Centre in Weston, for the Veterans to enjoy, be together and to chat and regale their memories of their times together. My role is to try to get as many Veterans together as I can from around the area to enjoy Breakfast and to make this a monthly event for them all to enjoy each other’s company.

It began when the Royal Anglian Association wanted to get their Veterans together, they concentrated on groups all over the country and abroad, and sponsored the Breakfast event, focussed on engaging with the Royal Anglian veterans who left the services in the last 10 – 15 years, it was for those who had lost touch with the Regimental family.  It is an opportunity to build connections with local communities and charitable organisations with a long-term benefit.

My intention has always been to continue to try to meet in the longer term, to enable me to organise these events more regularly I hope to encourage more Veterans and hopefully make this event successful for the future.  You pay for your breakfasts, we hold a raffle each time, the money going to something special at the end of the year.

Sir John Hayes CBE, came to welcome the Veterans as they arrived at Baytree Nurseries, on his way to another event. It was a pleasure to welcome Sir John who chatted to everyone about camaraderie, being together and fellowship, summing up why we have these gatherings once a month.  Sir John said ‘It was a pleasure to be able to speak to our Veterans and their families at the breakfast. It is great to see events like this, bringing people together to chat and relax over a cuppa. We must always remember to thank our Veterans acknowledging what they did for us all.’

Speaking about his father’s war service, Sir John thanked the Veterans for their devoted commitment to the Nation. The empathy and passion he felt came out when he spoke, as always. Sir John goes out of his way to come and see the Veterans whenever possible and has supported me in everything I do. I would like to take this opportunity to thank Sir John, he is always working at weekends, getting around his constituency, but has never failed to attend these kinds of events when asked, we all thank you, you are a true stalwart in the community.

Ben and the staff in the restaurant did us proud, all so kind and helpful and the breakfast was wonderful, inevitably some veterans wondered around the garden centre afterwards thinking of the coming Spring which is just around the corner.  ‘Loneliness, Isolation and a sense of disconnection can be a significant issue for many veterans, these events give us a chance to meet up over breakfast, have a brew, chat with new friends and old and hopefully build some long-term supportive relationships.

We were very lucky to have Reinhard Biehler as our speaker and as always, so funny, he made everyone laugh regaling memories of the beginning of his work here in Spalding and how he built his business up with his wife and family, a very humble man. Reinhard said ‘This Saturday morning the restaurant at Baytree played host to over 40 veterans for breakfast.  I am the founder of Baytree Garden Centre and enjoyed entertaining the group with a short talk on how the business developed from humble beginnings budding and selling roses to the present day. As always we felt we were fortunate to welcome Sir John Hayes who was only too keen to talk to the group members, it is always good to see Sir John in our Garden Centre’.

It is a well-known fact that Veteran suicides nationally are at a 15 year high and it is getting worse, It is time for us to join together and support each other, the camaraderie you once had is still around. This is a great opportunity to show each other support and to enjoy a few hours together. Thank you to everyone who helped to make our morning so special, special thanks to Ben and the staff who are all so friendly.  If you are interested and would like to join us, please email or call 07779895388, come and join us, I can give you the details and get your order in.  Help me to make it a regular feature in your diary for future months.

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