In March 2009, the Royal Hospital opened its doors to the first female Chelsea Pensioners: Dorothy Hughes and Winifred Phillips who both sadly are no longer alive. You can meet some of today’s female Pensioners below.

David Jackson is the only Chelsea Pensioner who was a pilot in the Army. After serving in Aden, North Africa, Cyprus and the UK, he became a commercial pilot. All together, he has clocked up an impressive 20,000 flying hours! Here he shares some of the highs and lows of his airborne career.

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.

According to Government figures, around 200,000 older people have not had a conversation with a friend or relative in more than a month. John experienced intense loneliness when his wife passed away and tells us how he learnt to overcome his feelings of social isolation. 

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.

First soldier to receive VC from Queen Elizabeth II died peacefully on 20th June at the Royal Hospital Chelsea, surrounded by his family.

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Battersea Dogs
Get to know the Battersea dogs

Pensioners and staff alike are always delighted when volunteers and dogs from Battersea Dogs and Cats Home make their monthly visit to the Royal Hospital. While the Battersea dogs and volunteers will not be visiting during the current restrictions in response to the Coronavirus,  read on to meet the dogs and follow them when they last visited the Infirmary.

General Sir Adrian Bradshaw
Founder’s Day Cancelled

​​With the country likely to be under prolonged isolation, the Governor of the Royal Hospital has reluctantly taken the decision to cancel the Founder’s Day celebrations this year.

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