Campaign aims to preserve D-Day memories for posterity

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June 6, 1944, was a momentous day in British history. Were you there? If you are a veteran of the invasion or of the support staff involved in the operation then a new national campaign would like to hear from you.

The campaign, run by Churchill Retirement Living, is looking for veterans to record their memories to help create a greater respect and understanding for older people in the UK.

As part of their work, Churchill carries out a lot of research amongst older people in the UK. This research has revealed that older people feel forgotten about by wider society and feel that they don’t matter any more. They don’t receive the respect that their work throughout their lives deserves and they feel that there is an ever-widening gap between the oldest and youngest in the UK today.

Churchill is seeking to begin to change this perception by highlighting the exceptional lives that today’s older generation have lived and through these life stories reconnect the young and old.

Managing director Spencer McCarthy said: “The younger generation will, for instance, watch the opening scenes of Saving Private Ryan with awe at the bravery of the soldiers but too many of them don’t translate that to a respect of the old, of the very soldiers who actually fought on the beaches of Normandy.

“We hope that by bringing the stories to life, recording them and making the stories available to schools and the wider community we can begin to change that.

“The older generation remain vital to the health of our society, they have substantial spending power, they represent a significant proportion of the popular vote and will continue to increase as a percentage of the overall population.

“Yet our research has shown that as a group they feel their opinions no longer matter. As a society we tend to view older people as simply old - not as ex-war heroes, ex-Olympic athletes, previous captains of industry or life long teachers and nurses. As a group the older generation has an awful lot to still contribute to society and important experiences to pass down and we feel it is important that their voice be heard a little louder.”

If you are a D-Day veteran and would like to take part in the campaign please call Churchill Retirement Living on 01425 462135 (Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm), they will take your details and one of the research team will call you back.