Portugal British Legion continues to expand

The Royal British Legion’s footprint in Portugal continues to grow, following a Christmas charity lunch on the Algarve’s West Coast.

The Portugal branch of the Legion has been holding regular lunches and dinners across the Algarve for a number of years.

And now, thanks to their recent expansion onto the Algarve’s west coast the Legion was able to hold a Christmas fundraiser in Vale da Telha, outside Aljezur, attended by some of their more recent recruits.

The lunch raised €438 which is to be divided equally between the Branch and the Poppy Appeal.

Branch Chairman Jacquie Collins welcomed the newer members – and some more established members from across the Algarve’s southernmost area, who had travelled over to meet their new colleagues – to the event at the Vale da Telha hotel.

Jacquie said afterwards: “It is really wonderful that, as the Legion approaches its centenary in just over five years time – May 15, 1921 – it continues to attract new members who appreciate the value of our armed forces and the wonderful work they do to protect us.”

The Army, Navy and Royal Air Force were all represented at the lunch by retired military personnel, many of them meeting each other for the first time.

They enjoyed swapping – sometimes literally! – war stories and reminiscences of their service.

In fact two former RAF men, who had not met before, discovered that they had served at the same time in the Middle East months apart some 50 years earlier, not just under the same commanding officer but in the same quarters!

And to make the coincidence even more incredible it transpired that back in England the daughter of one of them now lives in the same house where the other RAF man lived as a boy.

The RBL’s Western Algarve organiser Sue Howe, commented: “Not only was this first lunch here on Vale da Telha highly successful as a fundraiser it was also a wonderful success from a social point of view, both of which fulfil our raison d’être.

“We are happy that this will lead to more similar events here on the west coast as the RBL in Portugal continues to grow.”