Hero campaign backing from ‘glamour’ town

A SCARBOROUGH scheme providing vital support for serving members and veterans of the armed forces has welcomed a glamourous ally.

The Heroes Welcome campaign - founded in 2008 by the South Bay Traders’ Association with support from the Evening News - is now backed by the Surrey borough of Elmbridge.

The area - recently dubbed the Beverley Hills of Britain by a national newspaper - joins towns including Wootton Bassett, in Swindon, Blackpool and Bury St Edmunds in supporting Heroes Welcome.

However, the campaign now also has an international flavour after Phuket in Thailand in, with London’s Licensed Taxi Drivers Association are also on board.

John Senior, a former major with the 16 UK Air Assault Brigade, co-ordinates for the scheme and said he thrilled Elmbridge - home to celebrities such as Rolling Stones bassist Ronnie Wood and Chelsea footballer John Terry - had chosen to add its support.

He said: “It is all very exciting and we will have a lot of announcements in the coming weeks.

“Towns are now backing up and queuing to join the scheme which is just fantastic to see.

“It binds communities from all corners and people from every background.”

Mr Senior said he was buoyed by the increasing support from members of the public, which came at a time when the country’s RAF forces were set to be deployed in Libya.

He added the visual presence of the campaign had also played a key role in boosting the morale of armed forces members.

He added: “The fact that members of our armed forces see the support when they walk down the street is the most important part of this.

“When they are wandering down the street they see this omnipresence of support and it does mean a lot to them.

“They are working in difficult circumstances and it is good for them to see that their work in being acknowledged.”

Elmbridge Mayor, Cllr Barry Cheyne, added: “I am delighted that Elmbridge Council have found a way to emulate several other councils across the country in being able to give something back to returning troops who have already given so much in service of their country.”