Vetereans enjoying an ice cream at Worthing Pier during a day out organised by the Taxi Charity for Military VeteransVetereans enjoying an ice cream at Worthing Pier during a day out organised by the Taxi Charity for Military Veterans
Vetereans enjoying an ice cream at Worthing Pier during a day out organised by the Taxi Charity for Military Veterans

Worthing welcomes military veterans on annual trip once again – in pictures

A longstanding tradition has continued with black-cab drivers taking more than 100 military veterans on a trip to the seaside.

A fleet of taxis from the capital brought veterans from conflicts including the Second World War, Korea, Burma, the Far East, Falklands and Afghanistan to Worthing last Tuesday (July 2).

The group, which included Chelsea Pensioners in their iconic red tunics, was driven in convoy to Worthing seafront, where they were met by town crier Bob Smytherman before enjoying traditional fish and chips, ice cream on the pier and entertainment at the Pavilion Theatre.

The guest speaker was Matt Hellyer, chief executive of charity Pilgrim Bandits, who reached the rank of Warrant Officer in the SAS and served in every conflict over the past three decades, completing more than 400 operations.

The tradition began in 1948 and was organised by the London Taxi Benevolent Association for the War Disabled, which has since been renamed the Taxi Charity for Military Veterans.

Taxi Charity chairman Colin Mills thanked mayor of Worthing Ibsha Choudhury for donating the venue and finding parking for the cabs along the seafront.

Mr Mills said: “This was my first Worthing outing as chairman of the Taxi Charity and I am delighted that the team who organised the day did such a fantastic job and everyone I spoke to said they’d had a really good time.

Last Wednesday, Afghanistan veteran Ben Mead said: “Yesterday was a phenomenal day. Being able to enjoy the camaraderie and the banter between veterans and the taxi drivers is truly priceless. It is like being in the military where you don’t see each other for weeks, but suddenly whenever everyone gets together the conversation and the laughs carry on, as if it was only yesterday. As always when leaving to come home, I was full of happiness and had a huge smile on my face, thanks to the Taxi Charity for Military Veterans.”

For more information on the charity’s work, visit www.taxicharity.org

Related topics: