Tenbury Wells Branch

Tenbury Commemorates the 75th Anniversary of VJ Day.

At last, after months of lockdown and not being able to mark the 75th Anniversary of VE Day earlier this year, the Tenbury Branch of the Royal British Legion received permission to organise a 30 strong gathering, suitably socially distanced,   to commemorate the 75th Anniversary of VJ Day on Saturday 15th August. This was timely and very relevant, as a recent survey by a major Armed Forces charity revealed that almost half of Brits do not know what VJ Day is. Sadly, over half (52%) of those that previously did not know what VJ Day (Victory over Japan) is stated that they were not likely to do anything to remember VJ Day, even after discovering what the day marked.

This was not the case in Tenbury, where members of the Legion were joined in the town’s Memorial Gardens by the Deputy Mayor of Tenbury, Cllr Mary Drummond, Cllr Maggie Davies and Lesley Bruton, the Town Clerk. The Royal Naval Association was represented by their Branch Chairman, Ken Holloway and their Standard Bearer Roy Lewis, and the Town Band by their President, Mark Yarnold and Conductor, Melanie Parker. Mel played the two bugle calls: the Last Post and Reveille to coincide with the timing of the calls and the two minute silence at the National Memorial Arboretum, Alrewas. Mike Palmer carried the Union Standard and Edd Corfield was the Branch Standard Bearer. Prayers were conducted by the Branch Padre, the Rev Mark Inglis.

Major Richard Fox, President of Tenbury RBL, opened the proceedings with the Exhortation and, as we had not been able to commemorate the 75th Anniversary of VE Day on 8th May, this was followed by prayers remembering all who fought in the War in Europe and the thousands killed or wounded there. Our thoughts then went to the Far East, where fighting against the Japanese continued for a further three months before being brought to a close by the dropping of atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki and the unconditional surrender of Japan by the Emperor Hirohito 75 years to the day, on the 15th August 1945

For those fighting in the jungles of Burma, including men from Tenbury and District serving with 7th Battalion the Worcestershire Regiment, the dense, impenetrable jungle would have been an alien environment, where the humidity, heat and monsoon created terrible conditions for movement and fighting. And with the rain came leaches and thick liquid mud, in which a march of ten miles with supplies and equipment could take three to four days instead of one. After months in Burma spirits were low and most soldiers were in a weakened condition from dysentery, malaria and lack of food. They battled on despite these odds and against an experienced, jungle hardened enemy. Spirits were lifted by performances given in jungle clearings, close to the front line and fighting, by the ‘Forces Sweetheart’ the late, great Dame Vera Lynn. Our ceremony closed with wreaths being laid to commemorate VE Day and VJ Day.

Private John Perkins of Tenbury was killed fighting with the 7th Battalion the Worcestershire Regiment at the Battle of Kohima and the following Tenbury men fought at Kohima to great effect with the 7th Worcesters: Bert Haywood, Jack Walker, Pryce Marston, Percy Jones, Justin Dipper and Tom Wormington, so the Kohima Epitaph delivered by Chris St Clair, the RBL Branch Chairman, was particularly poignant:

When you go home, tell them of us and say, for your tomorrow, we gave our today.

Men of the 14th Army considered themselves ‘The Forgotten Army’ and this short poem by a soldier of the Burma campaign remains relevant today:

Remember these men who fought so well, and lived and died in that green hell.

Rev Mark Inglis leads with commemorative prayers.

Rev Mark Inglis leads with commemorative prayers.

President Dick Fox opens proceeding with the Exhortation.

President laying a wreath for VE Day.

He pays his respect after laying the wreath.

Chairman Chris StClair Laying a wreath for VJ Day.

Chairman pays respect after laying the wreath.

Standard beareres Mike Palmer(Union) Edd Corfeild (Branch) Roy Lewis (RNA).

Mel Parker played Reveille and Last post.

Standards are lowered during two minute silence.

Chairman thanked every one for coming and closed proceedings with the Kohama Epitaph.

Wreaths after they were laid..

The Birth of a Choir
At the 2012 RBL Tenbury Wells branch the Chairman Mr Roy Routledge Came up with the idea of forming a choir, and started recruiting Members the idea was to raise monies for the poppy appeal and to sing at the poppy appeal concert in 2013.

After his tireless efforts and with the help of Roger Champkin the Tenbury Wells Royal British Legion Choir was formed.
Late in 2013 and after a lot of practice the choir sang for the first time to the public at the Poppy Appeal Concert and was a great success
2014 saw a busy time for the choir with lots more practise and their repertoire increasing with more songs

On the 3rd of August the choir was invited to sing at the 1914 WW1 commemoration at the Burgage Tenbury Wells. The choir then sang at the Poppy Appeal Concert
After hearing the choir at the Poppy Appeal Concert the Worcestershire and Sherwood Foresters Association’s invited them to sing at the commemoration of the Battle of Gheluvelt followed by singing at Claines RBL for the ladies who had prepared sandwiches etc.
With Christmas approaching The Tenbury Wells Royal British Legion Choir was asked to sing at the branch Christmas party and Eastham village hall.

As with all choirs we are happy to perform at events for a donation towards the RBL, and free for Charity events. And, of course, we will be pleased to welcome new members of all ages to join the Legion and the Choir.

You do not have to have served in the armed forces to join the Royal British Legion, which is the Nation's leading Armed Forces Charity. The Legion gives practical, emotional and financial advice and support to all ranks of the British Armed Forces, past and present. It supports the principles of the Armed Forces Covenant and among its many activities, organises The National Poppy Appeal..

to book the Tenbury Wells British Legion Choir phone: Roy Routledge on 01584 810147 or email here...
News Letter
The Legion was formed as a voice for the Armed Forces community. 60,000 members help us ensure that this voice does not go unheard.

  • Join a network of people who care about the Armed Forces family
  • Support our campaigning work
  • Influence the future of the Legion
  • Enjoy friendship and camaraderie
  • Get involved nationally or locally
  • Access special discount schemes
  • Open to all supporters of the Armed Forces family


Branch affiliation enables members to work together with youth organisations on fundraising projects and promotes mutual community support.
Any youth organisation, whether it's uniformed or not, can become affiliated with a Legion branch. In fact, it can become affiliated to as many branches as it wishes to.

For more information contact Membership Secretary here.......

Each year the Branch holds a Church Parade on Remembrance Sunday. This parade normally assembles at the Auction Yard at 10.00hrs. and marches to St Mary's Church where a wreath laying ceremony takes place and at 1100hrs a 2 minutes silence. Following the Church service the parade retraces its route with the salute being taken by the Mayor, outside the Regal Cinema.

Each year at 1100hrs on Armistice Day, 11th November, the Branch organises the two minutes silence preceded by the playing of The Last Post in Teme Street, outside the Regal Cinema

The Branch also supports and marches in other town parades such as St Georges Day and The Civic Parade.
Details of Branch activities and parades are posted in our information box outside of G E Brights (Electrical) in Teme Street.