A 95-YEAR-OLD Arnhem veteran has given his backing to the appeal to raise £75,000 for a stone memorial in honour of the 10th Battalion, the Parachute Regiment.

John Jeffries attended the annual Somerby Commemoration recently before heading out to Holland to recreate the parachute jump he made during the Second World War.

A member of the Royal Corps of Signals, he decided to come out of retirement to make two drops to help raise money for charity and also remember his fallen colleagues.

Those jumps made it a particularly special Arnhem commemoration, 73 years after he was shot and taken prisoner during Operation Market Garden over Holland.

“It’s wonderful to see the 10th Battalion being remembered in this way,” he said, before taking the salute during the parade at the Somerby Commemoration.

“We were like a band of brothers, and although I was in the Royal Signals, we operated alongside the 10th Battalion and 156 Battalion, so we got to know them well.

“Though it was wartime, we shared some wonderful times together. We were all in it together and we were just trying to do our jobs in very difficult times.”

He added: “I feel slightly embarrassed with all the attention these days, but I do believe it is important that people remember what happened out there.

“I go to schools and colleges to talk informally to young people about my experiences and so creating this lasting memorial to the 10th is fitting recognition.”

Jeffries undertook his first parachute jump with the Red Devils in Peterlee to raise money for the Northumbria Blood Bikes charity before then heading out to Arnhem for the second drop which took place as part of the annual commemorations in Holland.

“At least I wasn’t being shot at this time,” he said. “I wanted to parachute into Arnhem again to remember all the boys who weren’t so lucky.

“I consider myself to be the luckiest man in the world that I was able to survive, despite being shot in the backside. I have so much to be thankful for.

“I just hope people will give generously to this Friends of the Tenth appeal, so there is a permanent memorial to remember the boys with.”

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THOSE of you eager to sample the new Myrtle ale brewed by Everards in support of the Friends of the Tenth campaign will be interested to know the pubs where it is now in stock.

The family-run Leicestershire business have reported an excellent uptake of the ale in the first two weeks of September with 65 pubs already stocking the cask ale appropriately named Myrtle.

That figure is likely to grow over the coming days, due to the live nature of a cask ale meaning that pubs landlords must manage their stock very closely and then sell it as quickly as possible.

Therefore, the list below is of Everards pubs who have taken delivery of Myrtle recently and will be putting it on sale within the next few days once it has conditioned in the cellar.

Five pence from each pint of Everards’ latest, specially-brewed guest beer sold during the month of September will go towards the Friends of the Tenth fund-raising which aims to raise £75,000 for the creation of a stone memorial to the 10th Battalion, the Parachute Regiment.

In addition to the pubs listed below, Myrtle will also be available at the Stilton Cheese in Somerby during the annual Commemoration weekend from September 8th to 10th.

The pubs which have taken delivery are:

Admiral Rodney, Calverton

Anchor Inn, Hathern

Anne of Cleves, Melton

Architect, Cambridge

Barley Mow, Cosgrove

Barley Mow, Leicester

Black Boy, Headington

Black Horse, Aylestone

Black Horse, Foxon Street, Leicester

Bradgate, Newtown Linford

Bricklayers, Thornton

Brunswick Inn, Derby

Bull, Broughton Astley

Bulls Head, Whetstone

Bulls Head, Leicester Forest West

Carpenters Arms, Walesby

Cherry Tree, Little Bowden

Colleyweston Slater, Lincolnshire

Cricketers, Aylestone

Crown Inn, Uppingham

Crows Nest, Glenfield Road

Elephant & Castle, Thurlaston

Falcon Inn, Long Whatton

Free Trade Inn, Sileby

Globe, Leicester

Greendale Oak, Cuckney

Honeycomb, Derby

Horse & Trumpet, Wigston

Horseshoes, Nuneaton

Marquis Wellington, Leicester

Millpool, Coventry

Nags Head, Glenfield

New Albion, Wakefield

New Inn, Enderby

Old Horse, Leicester

Old Kings Head, Long Buckby

Plough, Duxford

Plough, Littlethorpe

Queen Victoria, Syston

Queens Head, Saddington

Queens Head, Watnall

Racehorse, Warwick

Red Admiral, Broughton Astley

Red Lion, Huncote

Royal Oak, Edwinstowe

Royal Oak, Kirby Muxloe

Sir Robert Peel, Leicester

Stamford Arms, Groby

Star & Garter, Wigston

Sun Inn, Gotham

Swann Inn, Braybrooke

Swann Inn, Fradley

Tram Depot, Cambridge

Unicorns Head Inn, Langar

Virgins & Castle, Kenilworth

Wheatsheaf, Dallington

Wheatsheaf, Thurcaston

White Hart, Great Houghton

White Hart, Headington

White Horse, Banbury

White Horse, Quorn

White Horse, Silverstone

White Swan, Stoke Golding

Wild Boar, Warwick

Willow, Thurmaston

*Please remember, it is worth checking with the pub you are planning to visit that Myrtle is on sale, as there is a short delay between the delivery and it being made available.

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THE FRIENDS of the Tenth Appeal featured in a news bulletin on BBC East Midlands Today during the Somerby Annual Commemoration.

Political reporter Peter Saull attended the church service and parade on Sunday morning to focus on the fund-raising mission to create a stone memorial in honour of the 10th Battalion, the Parachute Regiment in the Leicestershire village.

He interviewed Alec Wilson, Chairman of the Friends of the Tenth group, and John Jeffries, the 95-year-old Arnhem veteran who took the salute at the parade prior to heading out to Holland to recreate his 1944 parachute drop.

The news item was broadcast at 6.50pm on Sunday evening and repeated again later that night.

If you missed the opportunity to see it then, you view it by going to https://vimeo.com/233462365

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ALEC WILSON has become a regular guest on BBC Radio Leicester over the past couple of weeks . . . and his latest appearance was to tell the story of ‘Myrtle’ following Everards’ launch of a specially-brewed guest beer for the month of September.

The Chairman of the Friends of the Tenth group explained how Myrtle the Parachick became one of the fascinating tales to emerge from the 10th Battalion, the Parachute Regiment’s association with Somerby and how it is now being remembered as the theme behind the red ale which has recently gone on sale to raise money for the memorial appeal.

Once again, Radio Leicester reporter Bridget Blair was asking the questions as Alec outlined the tale of the additional recruit to the Battalion, who was parachuted into the Battle of Arnhem 73 years ago in a bag carried by Lieutenant Pat Glover.

It was broadcast on the breakfast programme presented by Jo Hayward and Jim Davis, but you can listen to the feature by going to: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p05f9sv6

Remember, that Everards have confirmed that 44 pubs have now taken delivery of ‘Myrtle’ and so it should be on sale in those establishments very soon.

For more information about those pubs, go to https://friendsofthetenth.co.uk/everards-pubs-take-delivery-special-myrtle-ale/


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