The pandemic has meant it’s been a very difficult year for us all. The Chelsea Pensioners are no exception and have missed getting out and about. Nevertheless, they’ve put a brave face on it and, as one Chelsea Pensioner puts it, “the banter continues”.

We are delighted to be able to share an exclusive opportunity to join the Chapel Choir of the Royal Hospital Chelsea for the 2020 Christmas Carol service, which this year has been recorded to allow our friends and supporters to enjoy the concert from the safety and comfort of their home.

Today the Chelsea Pensioners had an early Christmas present delivered from the NHS in the administration of the Pfizer vaccine.

Senior staff nurse Gail St Juste Alcide says that the dementia ward’s Christmas celebrations will be as joyful as ever, despite the pandemic. 

The Christmas Cake Ceremony has been a tradition for over 70 years, beginning in 1949, and is a symbol of the enduring friendship between the UK and Australia.

The Royal Hospital Chelsea has been celebrating the Ceremony of the Christmas Cheeses ever since the first Chelsea Pensioners arrived back in 1692. It's a tradition that spans over three centuries! But this year was very different.

Although it is sadly not currently possible to welcome visitors to our grounds and garden, Grounds & Gardens Manager Ric Glenn gives you a glimpse behind our gates and updates you on the work his team has been doing during lockdown.

As we approach Armistice Day on 11th November, we share messages of remembrance from the Governor of the Royal Hospital and the Chelsea Pensioners attending the Cenotaph. 

Remembrance Day has always been a highlight in the Chelsea Pensioners’ year. Generally, they have a strong presence at the Cenotaph Remembrance Parade, the Festival of Remembrance at the Royal Albert Hall and a host of events both in the UK and overseas. This year, Remembrance at the Royal Hospital will be very different – but no less heartfelt

We were delighted to welcome footballing legend David Beckham to the Royal Hospital for the launch of the annual Poppy Appeal, to remember those who have died fighting for the Nation. 

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HRH, The Prince Philip - Duke of Edinburgh Painting
Chelsea Pensioners share recollections of HRH The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh

The Royal Hospital Chelsea community continues to send our thoughts and condolences to the Royal Family at this difficult time. Many of our Chelsea Pensioners were fortunate enough to meet HRH The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh at the Royal Hospital’s Founder’s Day celebrations or through his other official duties.

Infirmary Bombing
Remembering the Soane Infirmary bombing

Today marks 80 years following the bombing of the Royal Hospital’s Infirmary during the Second World War. The magnificent Infirmary, which once stood on the current site of the National Army Museum, was hit by a parachute bomb on 16 April 1941 – destroying most of the building and tragically ending the lives of 13 people.

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