Grantham Journal letter: Veterans urged to sign petition

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I would like to bring to the attention of all service veterans in Grantham, who never received any formal recognition of their service in either the Royal Navy, Army or Royal Air Force, and who have served in times of peace for the safety of the nation, that a petition is now being put before Parliament in order to rectify this anomaly.

It is hoped that at least 100,000 signatures can be collected before next year. The Campaign for a Veterans Medal hopes to reach this total in order to put before Parliament next year, to correspond with the bicentenary of the Battle of Waterloo.

The first reading of a bill to introduce a medal (to be called the National Defence Medal) went before Parliament on November 11 and was due to have its second reading on December 5.

This challenges the ruling of the Honours and Awards Committee in August which effectively put the approval of a medal on hold. The Campaign for a Veterans Medal is still short of the target figure and they are asking every ex-serviceman to sign up to the petition.

The points at issue are:

1. The recognition of those who served during the Cold War.

2. Recognition of a unique form of employment.

3. The decision to shelve the award of a medal by an unaccountable Government department would indicate that they are out of touch with veterans and the public in general.

4. The argument for expense is based on dubious costings and is grossly inflated.

5. National Defence Medals have already been approved and awarded by Her Majesty to three Commonwealth countries.

If you feel that your service has not been recognised and feel that a medal should be awarded, the committee can be contacted at: waterloopetition@gmail.com or Veterans Medal Campaign, The West Lodge, Colsoun, Haddington EH41 4PA.

M. G. Williams

Chelmsford Drive, Grantham