So I was interested in the announcement last year when I learned that Ladies were to be allowed to live at The Royal Hospital at Chelsea ,for retired service personnel .(this happened almost a year ago and I have been meaning to blog about it ,since then ! Ah well better late than never !)
'The First Women to join the ranks of the Chelsea pensioners have been welcomed with a ceremony'
Dorothy Hughes 85,from Oxford,who was a gunner and Winifred Phillips 82 who is from Deal in Kent was a former Auxiliary service member.
They will live along side 300 men at the Royal Chelsea hospital and wear the red coat .
General Lord Walker said it was " an historic event ".
The decision to open up the membership ,reflects the growing number of Women who have joined the Army since the 1950s
Ms Phillips who served in the Army for 22 years said she raised the question of why women were not allowed to become members a decade ago ,
Now she has seen her wish come true .
"When I was living in Shropshire 10 years ago I read a magazine article called the legion and it said they wanted more men ,so I wrote back and said ! why not Women".
They wrote back saying they agreed ,but it has taken me ten years to get here .
Declaring! "I like men",she added ; "its been fabulous.Its just like the Amy all over again,but you dont have so much to do ".
The new pensioners will wear specially adapted scarlet coats while off site and blue tunics when on it .
Like the male veterans they must also meet the criteria of being over sixty five,free of a dependant spouse and in receipt of an army pension.
There is also talk of designing an official handbag .....
I think its fair to say these Gentlemen think its a good idea !
These Ladies took part in the Royal British Legion ,Festival of Remembrance service last November ,at the Royal Albert Hall in front of The Queen and others members of the Royal Family ....
I hope you enjoyed the story, as much as I did in reseaching it ,history in the making ....
As ever lots of love