A NEW Breakfast Club from our friends in Sandwich, why not give them a go!


Veterans “Mess Tins & Banter” next one Wednesday 9th February, just turn up for breakfast 10.00 to 12.00…..Free! see poster below.

Gotta mate? bring him / her along they will be very welcome!


Why not check out our Facebook page!

Veterans “Mess Tins & Banter” next one Wednesday 12th January, just turn up…..Free! see poster below.



Why not check out our Facebook page!

Veterans “Mess Tins & Banter re-starts!

Next one Wednesday 13th October, just turn up…..Free!



Richard Samson’s 100th 29th November 2020 Deal Branch Member living in Eastry.


Boystown Place in Eastry was a hive of activity this morning as many friends and neighbours gathered outside Richard’s house to celebrate his Special Birthday as were members of the Royal British Legion. Kent County Chairman Richard Cast, Eastry Branch Chairman Terry James and Edward Barkway Chair of Downs Branch all gave suitable warm greetings and sincere good wishes to Richard. Edward made mention of Ryan Atkins proudly carrying the Downs Standard and Ryan’s wish to enlist in the Army, the Birthday Boy said Ryan was making “a good choice”

Three hearty cheers were led by John Allen followed by all present singing “Happy Birthday” A local history book signed by the author was presented to Richard Samson by Terry on behalf of George Mathison MBE and Douglas Welby.

Downs Branch was represented by Vice Chair Malcolm with wife and  committee member  Jennie Gibbons and Secretary Sue Andrews.

This meeting was approved by County, face coverings and social distancing advice was heeded.

Many more photo’s follow kindly supplied by Janet Barkway.


Richard’s nick name!


Cemetery Seat Vandalised

This is a picture of our seat in Hamilton Road cemetery provided for the use of anyone wishing to rest their legs or perhaps sit and remember a loved one, maybe a service man or woman that has died in protecting our freedom that we enjoy today.

Some mindless “reject” has seen fit to vandalise it, am I outraged or feeling sorry? if that person has some serious mental problem then you have my understanding and sympathy. However if you are deemed to be “normal” then you have nothing but my anger and distaste for you as a mindless apology for a human being, you are a total waste of good food and fresh air, you are not clever you are not strong you are quite simply a snivelling coward  who’s only act of bravery is to damage a seat in a place of respect and memory.

Thankfully a good citizen of Deal has volunteered to pay for the restoration of the damage to this valuable asset, that person is a hard working business owner struggling to make ends meet in these impossible times of hardship, that my friends is non other than Donna from Maxted’s Pet & Garden shop in Deal High St. that is bravery, that is strong, that is respect, and we thank you from the bottom of our hearts.


Important message for the Armed Forces Community

Serving or have served? click the link!


Important Welfare Message click the link


Dear All,

There are no major decisions or changes coming out of today’s extraordinary Executive Board meeting. However, I want to let you know about the great range of work that is being done by the Legion, across our country, directly supporting the people we are here to serve, taking the pressure off the state’s services and some directly helping the NHS.

I know you will be pleased to hear that our Care Homes are doing well. Our teams there are working around the clock looking after our residents in a challenging and fast-changing environment, providing quality care and a strong sense of community. The guidance for PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) was updated on 2 April 2020 by Public Health England. This has meant we need to restock with different equipment and so our Care Services and our Procurement teams are working together to ensure our staff and residents have what they need.

Our Admiral Nurses, who provide hugely valuable, specialist support to the Armed Forces community and their families living with dementia, are now operating as a fully telephone-based service. This means that they are able to provide support across the country and not just in certain areas. This is just one example of where our new ways of working mean we are able to reach even more people and do even more good.

To give you an overview of our services, generally, telephone calls, webchat and email enquiries for our services dipped during the first couple of weeks of the lockdown but are now increasing again as people turn to us for help. We’re seeing calls for support with food increasing whilst the majority of enquiries remain for financial support, benefits and debt advice. Our area and specialist teams continue to do fantastic work to support our those who need our help.

I have been speaking to Members too this week. Paul Wallace and the Oakengates Branch (just up the road in Houseman’s Shropshire) are providing vital help through the Branch Community Support programme. They know the isolated veterans in their community and have a telephone buddy system in place so they can keep in touch and provide any help needed. It is very simple but very effective. In one case they discovered a husband at home on his own because his wife is a nurse and she is having to stay in isolation in a room near the hospital. Now the Branch are supporting both of them.

Andy Stephenson in the South East Midlands is not only supporting the work of the Legion but like so many others he has volunteered to help locally and is working at his NHS hospital. He has found many of the people on his ward are from the Armed Forces Community. They are pleased to see the poppy on his Legion shirt and will give him a thumbs up. They know there are people who care for them. I hope to be able to share some short videos of those conversations soon.

Today we received, unsolicited, a major donation from a supporter, from someone who knows us, who knows our work and wants to help. These are challenging times. Our worries are real. Our world has changed utterly but wherever we look we can thousands of acts of sacrifice, of kindness, of fellow feeling that are already making and shaping the world we will move into. We can all play a part, whether it is simply supporting the NHS by following the Government direction to stay at home, directly volunteering for the NHS like Andy or making a real difference locally through Branch Community Support like Paul.

Thank you for all the work and time you are giving to support our Armed Forces Community. I hope you all manage have a break over Easter and time to recharge in this season of renewal.

Best wishes


Charles Byrne  Director General


County Community Support Officer Ken Bishop, contact him at kent.CCSC@RBL.Community  OR The Royal British Legion South East Area Office (Kent) Royal British Legion Village Aylesford Kent ME20 


Cancelled ’till further notice see DIARY

Mess Tins & Banter THIS Wednesday 11th March!

Don’t forget the Mess Tins and Banter meeting at the RMA 10.00 to 12.00 Wednesday 12th February & every 2nd Wednesday ALL Veterans welcome!


The our Bingo team will be back in action at St Andrew’s Hall 12th Feb 2020 1.30pm to approx 4pm EVERYONE welcome! 14.00 to 16.00  Free entry!    Contact John 01304 379995 OR Mary 07754204002 for FULL info!                                                      



Veterans Mess Tins & Banter update

Branch Vice Chair Malcolm Gibbons and Chair Edward Barkway attended the inaugural meeting on 11th December, they were very well received and took the opportunity to promote the Legion in general and our Downs Branch in particular. If you would like to become involved please contact Edward see the poster below for more info.


Hmm someone we know enjoyed his breakfast!


Veterans fancy a free breakfast?

We will be representing the Royal British Legion and the Downs Branch at the meetings come along and meet us there!



The Bingo regulars were out in force for the 8th May session, everyone is welcome to join in the fun from 2pm to approx 4pm. NO entry fee!

Many Thanks to the regular “crew” including John Elms, Mary Eldridge, Gwen Boucher and Lydia O’connor for all their help, not forgetting Molly the caller in ensuring the 26 players this session had a really good time!


We regret to announce that the monthly meetings at The Deal Centre have been suspended until further notice. See poster below.                                                                                                         



As can be seen from previous years Anny & John Elms, closely followed by Liz & Barry Larner have carried out valuable sterling work in the community.

We have now launched a new project called “Legion Links” which we hope will be of interest to members, non members, friends and veterans in fact everyone!

YOU are very welcome to come along for a “chin wag” and who knows you may find out something you didn’t know!

When………the third Tuesday of every month

Time………..11.00 to 13.00

Where……..Deal Centre for the Retired Park St Deal

Everyone & anyone most welcome, come & say hello!




 Comradeship and Welfare

I am delighted to report that our Welfare Representative  Elizabeth Larner, ably assisted by husband Barry, are meeting the needs of all those currently on their list however if you know of someone who would like to be contacted by the “Larner Team”