Pat McGurk joined the Army at 17 and never looked back. As a driver in the Royal Corps of Transport, he worked with close protection and the SAS, before driving dignitaries, VIPs and royalty. 

Chelsea Pensioner Dewi Treharne served for 27 years in the British Army. During that time, he was posted all over the world and grew particularly attached to Germany, where he spent 15 years of his military career. 

When the Royal Hospital opened its doors to women in 2009, Marjorie Cole jumped at the chance. Ten years on, she looks back at what brought her to the Royal Hospital and talks about what makes life as a Chelsea Pensioner so special.

93 year old Bill Fitzgerald is one of our incredible WW2 veterans. Here he talks us through his fascinating life story, from growing up in London during the Blitz, to participating in the historic D-Day landings, and then later making the decision to live at the Royal Hospital Chelsea as a Chelsea Pensioner.

Alan joined the army as a boy soldier aged just 14 years of age. Initially based in Cardiff; Alan moved to Belfast where he quickly established himself as a personal fitness instructor. In July 1944, having become old enough to join the regular Army, he transferred to the Army Air Corps as a paratrooper and went on to fight during the height of WWII - deep behind enemy lines in Germany.

In 1945, when an 18 year old Helen Andrews was told by the Army – “don’t tell a soul where you’ve been” – she followed their orders to the letter. It wasn’t until 70 years later, that Helen was finally happy to share the story about her involvement in the Second World War, her time at Bletchley Park, codebreaking and the Enigma machine.

The legendary story of a Chelsea Pensioner who blindsided the German forces on not one, but two occasions during World War Two.

From an East End boxing ring to the battlefield of the largest seaborne invasion in history, we take a look back at the story of Chelsea Pensioner, George Skipper.

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Pensioners holding a Christmas wreath outside
Festive thoughts from the Chelsea Pensioners

Christmas is almost here and although life is still far from normal the Chelsea Pensioners are enjoying being part of our community at this special time. We are celebrating in many of the traditional ways at the Royal Hospital – while ensuring guidelines are followed and the Chelsea Pensioners stay as safe as possible. 

Stirring of the Christmas Pudding Ceremony 2021
Festive fun at the stirring of the Christmas Pudding ceremony

Chelsea Pensioners and staff gathered together in the Great Hall on the last day of November to usher in the start of Advent with the first of the Royal Hospital’s annual Christmas traditions. 

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