Wednesday, June 25, 2008


Brave ex-servicemen - left homeless after their time with the forces ended - have new lives thanks to the Royal British Legion.

Simon Worsfold (48) served as a firefighter in the RAF for 13 years.

When his service finished, he and his wife bought a home in Grimsby, and Simon began working for the Legion as a case worker.

But when his marriage broke down, Simon found himself homeless on the streets of Grimsby with nobody to help.

"I was in a dead end," he said. "I'd had a triple heart bypass and wasn't well.

"Luckily, I only lived rough for weeks before I turned to the Legion for help."

And the Legion helped Simon turn his life around in his time of need.

They not only found him accommodation in a shared house on Isaac's Hill, Cleethorpes, but also secured him a job at Sentiments Funeral Directors, in Chantry Lane, Grimsby.

Simon said: "I don't know where I'd be without the Legion - they have given me my life back."

He is now preparing to undertake a one-year course to become a funeral director, funded by the Legion.

He added: "I've experienced the work the Legion does from both sides and it's just great."

Ted Davy, the British Legion's regional welfare secretary and Poppy Appeal organiser, said: "Last year, we raised &pound37,000 in Lincolnshire and we have spent already &pound70,000 on 250 people since November.

"It's awful the way that ex-servicemen are abandoned when they leave the services.

"There's no care, support or advice available, so we provide it.

"We not only care for ex-service people but their families as well.

"I have been given an electric scooter and a stairlift myself and it's made my life so much easier."

Another man who has benefited from the services of the legion is Lanny Powell (43), of Garibaldi Street, Grimsby.

He served in the Army twice before returning home in 1996.

He was the victim of a violent "happy slapping" attack and found himself homeless for months.

"The attack really affected me, especially my memory," he said.

"The Salvation Army gave me somewhere to stay, then I heard about the Legion and they offered me help."

Lanny now has a flat, furniture and is looking for a job.

He said: "The Legion has changed my life - it does a fantastic job."

Find out more

Contact the Royal British Legion, based in Cartergate, Grimsby, on (01472) 354135. Visit