RAF veteran creates Lord Trenchard gin to celebrate RAF centenary

Award winning premium spirits producer HDC (Heroes Drinks Company) have partnered with the RAF Benevolent Fund to create a limited-edition gin to commemorate 100 years of the RAF (Royal Air Force).

Lord Trenchard Gin has been created by military veteran and HDC Managing Director Chris Gillan, who founded HDC after a training injury ended his RAF career. Chris struggled with the transition to civilian life after he was left facing homelessness following a flood which destroyed his property. He turned to the RAF Benevolent Fund for help and their support enabled Chris to turn his life around and inspired him to dedicate his career to giving back to military charities and helping other members of Britain’s Armed Forces community.

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Shortlist announced for RAF welfare charity’s annual awards night

The RAF’s leading welfare charity, the RAF Benevolent Fund has announced the shortlisted nominees for its sixth annual awards. The winners of nine awards categories will be revealed at a special ceremony at London’s Gibson Hall, to be held on 7 June 2018.

Air Vice-Marshal David Murray, Chief Executive of the RAF Benevolent Fund, said: “The RAF Benevolent Fund simply could not carry out the vital work that we do, supporting the RAF Family, without the help of our incredible supporters. Each year it gets harder and harder to decide on the winners of these awards and that is a testament to the hard work, dedication and creativity with which our supporters contribute to the Fund and its work.

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Tributes paid to brave Dambusters raid airmen

Today marks 75 years since the RAF’s now legendary Dambusters set off on their audacious raid to destroy three German dams at the heart of the Nazi war machine.

Fifty-three pairs of gloves laid out by the RAF Benevolent Fund at the Bomber Command Memorial were a stark reminder of the lives lost that night, the families left without a loved one. RAF Chaplain Michael Chatfield paid tribute to the 133 brave airmen who set off on the raid in 1943 and RAF bugler Corporal Andrew Lofthouse signalled a minute’s silence with the Last Post.

RAF Benevolent Fund Director of Fundraising and Communications John Trampleasure laid a wreath in memory of the airmen killed.

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RAF charity helps veteran’s Spitfire dreams come true

The 76-year-old was overwhelmed by the lengths the RAF’s leading welfare charity went to, to fulfil his dying wish after he contacted them for practical help following a terminal cancer diagnosis. He was watched by his entire family, siblings, his three children, eight grandchildren including one watching online from Taiwan, and two new great-grandsons as staff at Biggin Hill Heritage Hanger helped him into the aircraft. Even Spitfire pilot Don Sigournay paid his own respects, dipping the wings of his Spitfire in tribute to John’s service as he flew past the hangar.

John’s daughter Tracy Weager said: “When I first told dad ‘get your flying jacket cleaned, we’re going to Biggin Hill’ he burst into tears.

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‘Unique’ wellbeing books aimed at RAF youngsters launched at RAF Benson

A new series of books aimed at improving the mental health of the RAF Family has been launched at RAF Benson Community Primary School by the RAF’s leading welfare charity, the RAF Benevolent Fund.

The Fund is piloting the books in response to research which found more than half of military parents believed a military lifestyle had a negative impact on their children and led to an increase in psychosocial problems.

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Luke crowned People’s Choice winner at Soldiering On Awards

RAF veteran and Invictus athlete Luke Delahunty has been crowned this year’s People’s Choice award winner at the Soldiering On Awards. Luke was announced as this year’s winner at the special event held in London which recognises the achievements of those who have served their country and the diverse people and groups who work in support of the Armed Forces community.

The RAF’s leading welfare charity, the RAF Benevolent Fund, who has supported Luke for more than 22 years, nominated him for this prestigious award in light of his outstanding contribution to other spinal injury victims.

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RAF Triathlon team of six conquer 106 miles with RAF100 baton

Tide, hills and 106 miles were overcome by a team of six RAF triathletes to deliver the RAF100 baton to the RAF Benevolent Fund’s Princess Marina House on Sunday.

The stop was the latest in the 100-day relay which sees the commemorative baton travel around the country, visiting RAF stations and memorials on a mission to celebrate, commemorate and inspire the next generation.

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‘My grandfather recognised the responsibility we have to care for the RAF Family’

My grandfather, Hugh Trenchard, the first Viscount Trenchard, often called the Founder of the RAF, became its first Chief of the Air Staff on its formation on April 1 1918.

The new service was revolutionary: it sought its officers and men from all backgrounds, with my grandfather wanting the very finest people for the fledgling force, whether they were the sons of dukes or dustmen. It was not their background that was important, it was their ability.

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Test your aviation knowledge with the devilishly difficult RAF100 quiz

So you think you know the RAF? All 100 years of history? Think again!

For example, did you know the Spitfire was first named something rather less intimidating? Or do you know what the code word angels refers to?

The RAF Benevolent Fund has launched a RAF100 quiz, featuring questions to test even the most knowledgeable aviation experts with multiple choice and true or false questions. Those who pass the test and answer all the questions correctly are given the opportunity to download one of a series of special edition commemorative posters.

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