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Almost 12k armed forces veterans living in Cornwall

Almost 12k armed forces veterans living in Cornwall

Published by the Pirate FM News Team at 7:28am 10th November 2019. (Updated at 6:02pm 11th November 2019)

Figures reveal how many veterans are living in Cornwall, as the UK stops to remember those who gave their lives fighting for our freedom.

There are almost 12,000 working age veterans in the Duchy, aged between 16-years-old and 65-years-old.

More than 8,500 have received some form of armed services pension or compensations for injuries caused. 

Since the 2019 Poppy Appeal launched on October 24th, Royal British Legion volunteers have been busy collecting donations.

The appeal will end on November 11th, otherwise known as Armistice Day, with Remembrance Sunday marked the day before.

Probus Navy veteran, Tony Hendra, chairs the Royal British Legion in Penryn and says it is vital we remember those who gave their lives and those serving now.

"It's very important because without them, we wouldn't be where we are nowadays. They gave so much for what we have now, to defend peace - and to me, it's extremely important.

"It's not all about World War One or World War Two, it's about all armed forces personnel that made the ultimate sacrifice and their families. But also, all those who are coming back now and need our help; especially now because of the amount who are being diagnosed with PTSD and mental health issues".

Tony Hendra

armistice day 1


How many veterans are living in Cornwall?

The Government does not keep a comprehensive record of all armed-forces veterans living across the UK, but the Ministry of Defence does publish a variety of statistics which give an insight into the veteran population in the area.

Veterans under 65:

According to the 2011 census, Cornwall is home to an estimated 11,723 working-age veterans - those aged between 16 and 64.

That is around 4% of the overall population , one of the highest proportions in England and Wales.

Of these, 90% were men and 10% women.

The Office for National Statistics is planning to collect more comprehensive information about veterans in the 2021 census.

This is intended to help the Government, councils and NHS services plan support for veterans and their families, in areas such as health, housing and employment.

fallen soldiers


Pensions and Disability Compensation:

A total of 8,638 people in Cornwall have received some kind of armed forces pension or compensation for injuries caused by service in the armed forces, according to MoD statistics covering to March.

Of these, 8,121 are veterans, with the remainder made up of family members or personnel who are still in active service.

War Pension Scheme:

The War Pension scheme was a compensation programme for armed forces personnel who were killed or suffered injuries or ill health as a result of service, from the start of the First World War up to April 2005.

It consists of a weekly or monthly pension, or lump sum.

In Cornwall, at least 1,747 veterans had received compensation or a pension under the scheme as of the end of March, according to the latest figures, as have 259 widows and widowers.

Armed Forces Compensation and Pension Schemes:

The Armed Forces Compensation Scheme replaced the WPS in 2005.

To date, 311 veterans and 257 serving personnel in Cornwall have received compensation under it.

This consists of a lump sum, with an additional ongoing payment for more serious cases.

Dependents who have received compensation because of the death of a veteran are not included in the figures.

Members of the armed forces who have served for at least two years are entitled to a pension once they reach retirement age.

In Cornwall, 7,255 people currently claim a military pension.



Characteristics of Veterans:

Around one in eight working-age veterans in England and Wales say their day-to-day activities are limited because of a disability, according to the 2011 census.

In Cornwall, 810 veterans (7%) said their activities were limited a lot, and 1,035 (9%) said they were limited a little.

Overall, 535 veterans aged under 65 (5%) said they could not work because of a disability.

While the majority of veterans are homeowners, figures published by the Ministry of Housing, Communities, and Local Government show that seven veterans needed support from the council between January and March this year because they were homeless or were going to become homeless within 56 days.

A spokeswoman for the Royal British Legion said life in the armed forces brings "unique challenges", both during and after service:

"We offer support in a number of ways including providing crisis grants, researching the changing impact of blast injuries on the body, lobbying the government on key issues, specialist dementia care, sport and art-based recovery programmes, and advising on benefits and money problems.

"We are here 365 days for any member of the Armed Forces community that may need our help and support".

Royal British Legion

You can read more about the support offered by the Royal British Legion here.

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