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Blind veterans benefit from Booker celebration
THOUSANDS raised at a landmark Jubilee celebration event in Booker have been donated to a charity dedicated to helping blind war veterans.
The cash was raised by the Booker Memorial Hall Association over the Queen's Diamond Jubilee weekend, in an event harking back to the area's past, when Booker was reknowned for its community celebrations.
Keith Francis, Chairman of the Booker Memorial Hall Management Committee, said the event raised money beyond expectations. "It was nowhere big as past events, but it was an unbelievable atmosphere and had an amazing community spirit", he added. He said throughout the 1950s similar events attracted thousands of attendees, but they gradually dwindled over time.
The village show was a traditional-style event, including face painting, bowling, craft stalls, live band, barbecue and beer tent. According to Mr Francis, the Hall, originally called the "War Memorial", differs from others for showcasing not only the names of those who died in war, but also of those who made it back home. The Hall has been used by the community since 1920.
Mr Francis said the celebration had given a boost to the community and he hoped they would continue in years to come.
The Blind Veterans UK, formerly St. Dunstans, was chosen to benefit because of its work with veterans who have lost their vision, fully or partially, in or out of action. "They do an amazing work and receive no money from the government", said Mr Francis.
Services offered by charity's centres, in Brighton, Llandudno and Sheffield, include rehabilitation programs, art and craft classes, sports and recreation, clubs and societies, information technology, care and welfare.
For more information go to www.blindveterans.org.uk