Eligibility

We now have availability to accept applications to become a Chelsea Pensioner from individuals who meet the below criteria: 

To be eligible for admission as a Chelsea Pensioner, a candidate must be a former non-commissioned officer or soldier of the British Army who is:

  • Over 65 years or of State Pension age (whichever is the greater)
  • Either in receipt of an Army Service Pension or War Disability Pension which you would be required to surrender upon entry to the Royal Hospital OR if you do not receive an Army Pension you would be required to make a weekly financial contribution (payable by Standing Order) towards your living costs. This contribution will be based on an assessment of affordability completed during the application process. Please note, if you are in receipt of an Army Service Pension and/or War Disability Pension you may also be required to make a top-up contribution (also based on an assessment of affordability) 
  • Free of any financial obligation to support a spouse or family
  • To be able to live independently in the sheltered accommodation (Long Wards) – the Royal Hospital Chelsea is unable to accept direct entries to the nursing wards

Also eligible for admission are any former officers of the British Army who meet the criteria, provided they served for at least 12 years in the ranks before obtaining a commission or if they were awarded a disablement pension while serving in the ranks.

We will accept applications from any individual who meets the above criteria.

We generally receive many more applications than we have available berths and we want to ensure that we select the most suitable candidates for the opportunity to live at the Royal Hospital and fulfil the role of a Chelsea Pensioner. Therefore there will be occasions when applications are not successful.

As part of our selection process we will take into consideration an individual’s Army service record, together with an assessment as to how an individual will benefit from a place at the Royal Hospital and how an individual would be able to represent both the Royal Hospital and the wider veteran community. 

How to Apply
Contact the Chelsea Pensioner Admissions Officer Nicola Seccombe.
Phone: 020 7881 5204
Email: admissions@chelsea-pensioners.org.uk

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Chelsea Pensioner pictured Dairy UK Chair Paul Vernon, the Governor of the Royal Hospital and the ceremonial cheese
Chelsea Pensioners and Dairy UK take part in the annual Ceremony of the Christmas Cheeses

A festive tradition dating back to the opening of the Royal Hospital in 1692 – today Dairy UK donated over 270kg of British cheeses to the Chelsea Pensioners to tide them over the festive period.

Christmas Pudding
Festivities begin with the stirring of the Christmas Pudding

The Christmas period officially got underway today at the Royal Hospital, as the Chelsea Pensioners took part in the tradition of stirring in the ingredients for the Christmas pudding.

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