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Ladies and Gents
Remembrance Sunday 2020


Please see the latest briefing note from the Lord Mayors Office, Liverpool


People are being urged to go online this Remembrance Sunday to pay their respects to those brave men and women who have fought for their country.

Due to the ongoing health pandemic. 
This year’s Annual Service of Remembrance will take place online on Sunday 8th November, starting at 10.30am.


There will be no public gathering on this day.


The online service, which was pre-recorded in October with all covid-safe measures in place, is entitled Remember from Home and is officiated by The Rector of Liverpool, The Reverend Canon Dr Crispin Pailing.


In attendance are civic dignitaries including the Mayor of Liverpool Joe Anderson and the Lord Mayor of Liverpool, Councillor Anna Rothery. They are joined by a small number of key representatives from the military, ex-service organisations and faith leaders.


It will include a virtual parade made up of footage supplied by regiments and associations across Liverpool and will be accompanied by music from The Band of The Duke of Lancaster's Regiment.


The Service will also reflect the city’s diverse communities and their contribution to Britain’s war effort, with a particular emphasis on black service personnel who served during World War One and their subsequent treatment when they returned to the UK and Liverpool.


A specially commissioned spoken word piece by Liverpool poet, rapper, singer-songwriter and producer Daniel Sebuyange, known professionally as Blue Saint, will also be performed and released in the run up to the service to express the deep significance of Remembrance Sunday, especially during the current health pandemic.


Watch the online service via the link button                                                       the web page will be live on the day.


At 11am on Sunday, residents are asked to observe the two-minute silence at home or on their doorstep, in line with the wishes of the Royal British Legion.


Anyone who would like to lay a wreath at the Cenotaph on St George’s Hall plateau is asked to do so ahead of lockdown regulations coming in to force on Thursday 5 November.


Other activities taking place to support the remembrance commemorations will see key city buildings light up red from 8-11 November – including Cunard Building, Liverpool Town Hall and St George’s Hall.


Members of the public are encouraged to visit Culture Liverpool’s digital memory wall to contribute their memories, photos and stories of those who have died during times of conflict, served in the military or support services.


Anyone who wishes to comment in the ‘Thank You’ book held within the Liverpool Hall of Remembrance, can email their message to and can also search for relative’s name who served during World War One on the Roll of Honour here.


An education pack is also available on the Culture Liverpool site which features links to a whole host of remembrance resources.




Lord Mayor of Liverpool, Councillor Anna Rothery, said: “Remembrance Sunday is a time when the country comes together to remember those who have paid the ultimate sacrifice in two world wars. It is also a time to remember those injured and bereaved in recent conflict.

 Our annual service attracts huge crowds to St George’s Hall plateau and this simply isn’t something we could do this year. I am honoured that we can still offer a virtual service which gives people the chance to take some time out on Sunday and pay tribute to those who have made the ultimate sacrifice. “I would like to take this opportunity to praise and thank our present military who have played such a vital role during the pandemic, many who are reservists, key workers or working for our National Health Service.”


On supporting the virtual service, the County President, The Royal British Legion, Lieutenant Colonel Anthony Hollingsworth MBE said: ‘The Royal British Legion has a long association with the Liverpool and this year we are proud to again stand shoulder to shoulder with the city and support the plans during such difficult times.  “It was a privilege for me to be part of the virtual service and provide the act of remembrance which is so hugely important. “I ask our ex-servicemen and women to adhere to the guidelines set out by The Royal British Legion and Liverpool City Council. Please remain safe and take time to remember those who have paid the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom.”


Blue Saint said: “This is such an important and incredibly needed project and event and I feel extremely honoured to be  part of it. “I find, in this day and time, where everything seems like a blur and where there’s a great amount of uncertainty, in those moments, hope and faith is vital.  “In those moments, we must remember who we are, what we have, what we have overcome and the sacrifices made to bring us here. It’s in these moments, we must reflect, take time to stop and think, take time to be grateful, take time to just be.


“Faith, as well as hope, is an extremely powerful and much needed force that drives us, motivating us to keep moving forwards, to endure, to remain resilient."


Brian Welsh


Parachute Regiment Association

Liverpool Branch

Mob: 07871901206

Ladies and Gentlemen:


Due to further developments regarding the impact of COVID-19, the monthly PRA Liverpool Branch meeting has been cancelled for November 3rd. We will await the outcome of further government guidance before we determine if our December branch meeting will take place.


Bruce has been in contact with many of our members regarding welfare and reports that things are fine with no real changes to anybody’s circumstances. However, We have been informed of the sad death of Alex Sutton. Alex was aged 95, ex 6 Para and jumped into the South of France and was at Monte Casino and Greece. We have no funeral details at present but will pass them on as soon as we know.


It remains so important that we all continue to look after each other through these challenging times. A quick phone call to a friend or other member may be all that it takes to raise their spirits and remind them that their friends are thinking of them.


Please don’t forget that your committee are all at the end of a phone. If you need to simply catch up with things or need some support please don’t hesitate to get in touch.


What a sight it is on Remembrance Sunday when over 100 maroon berets march past the cenotaph. Many of us also attend other venues or reflect in our own way to pay our respects and remember all of the men and women who lost their lives in so many theatres of conflict. Alas, this year it is with great sadness that we, The Parachute Regiment Association, Liverpool Branch will not be attending the cenotaph in a formal capacity.


It is vital that we all follow government guidance and:


1. Stay at home except for specific purposes and;

2. Prevent gathering with people you do not live with except for specific purposes.


You can only visit outdoor public places with people you live with or in your support bubble, which includes public gardens and parks.


If you wish to visit the cenotaph, St John’s gardens or any other venue to pay your respects please do not gather in groups and do follow government guidance. If you do gather in groups I’m sure some people would assume you will be representing the Parachute Regiment and the next thing we know there would be the potential of photographs and negative press associated with The Parachute Regiment and/or our Association.


Lest We Forget

Brian Welsh

Liverpool PRA

Branch Secretary



Ladies and Gentlemen

Due to recent changes in government policy and restrictions placed upon Liverpool PRA by our temporary venue, Aintree Conservative club, I would like to inform you that tomorrow  the 6th October PRA meeting had been cancelled.


We will continue to review both government and local COVID-19 restrictions and endeavour to hold our meeting next month.


Maj Boyle will be in attendance at the venue tomorrow to inform those who turn up and other members without access to e-mail.  However, if you are able to contact any colleagues without access to email that would be great.


I will keep you informed of any changes. In the meantime please don’t hesitate to contact me.


Best Regards


Brian Welsh

Branch Secretary

Liverpool Branch

The Parachute  Regiment Association

Breaking news:

Treasurer Michael Hurst:


As a result of discussions amongst the Committee and investigation into a venue I am writing to inform all that we have decided to offer to you a location, for our next meeting on the 4th August 2020 commencing 7:00pm, at the following address:


The Conservative Club

Lancing Lane



L10 8LN


The format for entry to the meeting is as follows:


The Main Hall is the venue. Car parking is available at the Club and it is proposed the doors will be open at 7:00pm.


Members of the PRA temperatures will be tested, at the door, prior to entrance.


Should you have an abnormal temperature you will be asked not to attend and suggested you go home.


Inside the club will be hand sanitise which you will be asked to use, prior to seating.


Face masks will be available at the entrance, if you already have one feel free to bring in with you.


The Hall is large enough to seat approximately 200 persons so social distancing will apply and you will be asked to take a table, starting at the front and working back down the hall.


The tables will have been sanitise prior to your arrival.


The bar in the main hall will NOT be open but if you want a drink you will be directed to the members Lounge, which has isolation screens, where you can purchase alcohol or soft drinks. You must then return to the Main Hall with your drink.


The meeting will commence at 8:00pm with the  usual Agenda.


When the meeting closes members will be directed to the appropriate exit, in a controlled manner. Any glasses, bottles or cans you have used please bring with you and they should will be placed on a designated table as you leave


Hand sanitizer will be available at the exit and I would ask you use  it as you leave.


Please feel free to use the hand sanitizer as much as you want and washing facilities in the toilets are available throughout the meeting.


I trust the above meets with your approval and look forward to as many as possible turning up at the venue bearing in mind it will be 5 months since our last meeting and it will be nice to see everyone after such a long time.


I would ask, please, that if you have any symptoms of Covid 19 or any member of your family is ill then, please, do not attend.


Many thanks and look forward to seeing all who are able to attend


Best wishes and enjoy your weekend



Liverpool PRA Branch monthly meetings cancelled till further notice.

Further to the below email correspondence regarding the Coronavirus situation, I wish to inform members that next month's meeting of the Liverpool branch of the PRA is cancelled. Members of the committee will continue to monitor the situation, as suggested by Col. Harkon, and I will update members accordingly regarding future meetings. 


Arthur C  


Message form our Chairman:

I would like to pass on my best wishes to all branch members and their families, and hope that they are all keeping well and safe.

As a matter of welfare, I try to ring the older branch members at least once every couple of weeks and I am happy to report that they all seem to be keeping well under the circumstances. Their main complaint seems to be about haircuts and some say that they now look like Robinson Crusoe

We seem to have been in a dark tunnel, but the light at the end now seems to be getting brighter and nearer. Hopefully it won’t be too long now before we can resume our regular meetings at Mather Avenue.
Best wishes and stay safe, 
Bruce Cargill, Chairman, Liverpool Branch PRA


Dear Airborne Warriors:

Now July is over half way through the year and we’ve also passed the longest day, it’s been some time since we last had a branch meeting which was back in February, hopefully as restrictions now seem to be easing, we can look forward to gathering once again soon.

The following are a couple of articles which I gleaned from the recent ‘Airborne Network’ newsletter; you may find them interesting.


Parachute Regiment has marked the 80th anniversary of the formation of the British Army’s airborne forces.

On June 22, 1940 Prime Minister Winston Churchill wrote a memorandum calling for the formation of “a corps of at least 5,000 parachute troops”, having seen the effectiveness of German airborne troops during the initial campaigns. The date is considered to be the birthday of the Parachute Regiment and Airborne Forces


A former British paratrooper has left the previously uninhabited island where he had been isolating after lockdown measures were introduced during a fundraising challenge.

I think this is the ex-Para who attended our annual church service a couple of years ago, we filled him up with food and drink in Ma Boyles Bar and one of our members put him up for the night in a hotel.

Origins of the Red Beret.


The Maroon beret was officially adopted for use on 29th July 1942 in Army Council Instruction 1596, although the actual colour had been selected at an earlier, unknown, date with the first order for berets being placed in May 1942 for 5,000 berets and followed by a further order in June 1942 for 10,000 berets.






Daphne du Maurier (wife of General Browning) confirmed in a post war letter to the museum, that she did not select the maroon colour, but would be very happy for the myth to continue!

Our understanding is that the choice of beret was between Cambridge blue or maroon (the chosen colours for airborne forces insignia and based on Browning’s racing colours) and with the senior officers of Browning’s staff not being able to decide, asked the private modelling which he preferred and he picked maroon.

Foreign airborne formations also began to adopt the maroon beret with, initially the 1st Canadian Parachute Battalion (as part of the UK military formation) and then the Belgians also adopted a maroon beret for their fledgling Parachute Company which was distributed in a ceremony on 21st July 1942 in London.

Free French Paras initially wore a black beret with a white on grey Polish collar insignia as a badge which was rapidly replaced with The Parachute Regiment cap badge and then SAS wings as they formed part of the SAS.  In early 1944 command of the SAS came under British Airborne Forces and the maroon beret was to be worn across all SAS units - be they British, French etc.  Some of the British SAS resisted this and notable examples - particularly Paddy Mayne kept their earlier sand coloured versions.  However, the French seemed to wholly embrace the maroon beret. The main exception to the use of maroon were the Poles who produced their own grey beret and continued to wear it throughout the war.

Keep well, keep sane and I look forward to seeing you all again soon.

Col. (ret’d) Joe Harkon, Branch President, PRA Liverpool Branch.

PRA North West Regional Committee meeting:

As the first video conference meeting was such a success, a further regional committee video conference meeting took place on Friday 3rd July 2020. As the regional committee is busy planning the ABFD80 which has been transferred to 2021, following the cancellation of the 2020 event, the committee needs to meet on a more frequent basis. As mentioned in the previous newsletter, a considerable amount of time and cost can be saved by using this relatively new technology and it is felt that this is the way forward.

As tickets for the event have been oversubscribed, members of the sub committee are endeavouring to increase the number to 400 in order to accommodate demand.

The minutes of the meeting will be circulated when they have been published.

Vacancy for Liverpool Branch Secretary

It was my intention to stand down as branch secretary at our AGM, which should have been held in March, but due to the Covid-19 problems, all regular meetings have been cancelled. In view of this I agreed to carry on until things get back to normal. During the time that I have been in office I have thoroughly enjoyed doing the job but I am not getting any younger and feel the time has come for a younger and more active person to replace me.

I think it only fair to point out that there is a bit more to the job than just taking the minutes at our monthly meetings, and if anybody is interested in standing for the position I would be happy to let them have a job description in order that they are fully aware of what the job entails.

Best wishes to all, and stay safe,                                                                         



Arthur Cheetham
Branch Secretary



Dated: 04 June 2020

I hope that this newsletter finds everyone in good fettle. Maj. Boyle has formed a small group of volunteers, tasked to keep in touch by telephone, with our members who are not able to receive emails, with particular attention being given to the old and the bold, in order to keep them in the loop and to make sure that they are not experiencing any welfare problems. I am pleased to report that in true airborne fashion everyone seems to be coping well with the present situation. Our Chairman Bruce, in his capacity of Acting Welfare Officer, has been has been keeping in touch with a number of members with health problems. Sadly, a number of our members have passed away during the course of the last three months. They were Peter Blackmore, Ken Lang and former branch member, Lee Crichton. Unfortunately, we were unable to attend their funerals and celebrate their lives in the usual airborne manner due to the present restrictions.


A number of events have had to be cancelled this year, including the ABFD80 to commemorate the formation of The Parachute Regiment and the British airborne forces, after so much work had gone into organising the event by members of your Regional Committee. However, the good news is that the venue at Tatton park has been booked again for next year and will now take place on Saturday 10th July 2021. Members of the Regional Committee are now busy re-booking the various events that we had planned for this year.

As a result of the government regulations, we are not able to hold our regional meetings at Fulwood Barracks at the present time. As we were overdue a regional meeting, one of the committee members came up with the idea of holding a video conference meeting. After a preliminary video meeting last Wednesday, to try it out, the actual meeting went ahead on Friday and proved to be very successful with eleven regional representatives taking part. As we were using the “Zoom” facility on a free trial basis we were limited to units of just 40 minutes. In order to have unlimited time access to the facility, together with a number of other benefits, we are required to pay a monthly fee of £11.00. After some discussion on the matter it was agreed to pay this amount from regional funds. One of the advantages is that it will facilitate branch representatives from branches on the fringes of the region, such as Cumbria and North Wales, taking a more active part in regional affairs. The rest of the committee would benefit from less travelling time and the expense of travelling to meetings. 


Members who subscribe to Pegasus Journal should have received notification that a decision has been taken to reduce publication of Pegasus Journal from three copies a year to just one Yearbook edition which will be published in January each year. The reason given for this decision was because of the cost involved in the production etc. and the fact that it has been produced at a financial loss for many years. The subscription for the proposed Yearbook will be £10.00 a year. The matter was discussed at the Regional Meeting and various feelings of disappointment at this decision were expressed, some in very robust terms.

The North West Regional President, Lt. Col. Macaulay , said that he intended writing to the publisher on behalf of the Region and would express our disappointment at this decision and point out that other military units, most of which were smaller in size to the airborne forces, were able to publish good quality journals 3 – 4 times a year at a reasonable price. It would be helpful if individuals could support this initiative by expressing their views on this matter by writing to the following:                                                                                                

Lisa Waller, Pegasus Journal Manager,                                                                                        

RHQ PRA,                                                                                                              

Merville Barracks,                                                                                                 

Circular Road South,                                                                                               

Colchester, CO2 7UT.



Dear Airborne Warrior,

Hopefully both you and your family have been able to stay safe in these very strange times, something that I suppose none of us has ever experienced before.

First of all I would like to thank Arthur, Mick and Bruce for keeping all of us with email addresses updated on important issues  regarding both our Branch and Airborne matters in general, and to Frank Boyle and his team who have been following up on those of our members without email addresses, including the possible vulnerable ones (age and health wise) which quite a few of us fall into this category, checking on how we are.

Sadly, the Branch has had a few members who have passed on during this period of lock-down and its not been possible for us to show our normal appreciation of their comradeship, so hopefully, later this year, in October, the annual church service theme should be our memorial and remembrance of those individuals who have gone during the lock-down period.

Some information that that I have just received concerning the 76th anniversary of the 6th June Landings. Because the celebrations in Normandy in June have been cancelled due to the current pandemic, it was decided to broadcast a remembrance service on Facebook which will be posted on the 6th June 2020 at 1100 hrs. Last week, filming of the ceremony started in Colchester, which includes 3 Para’s Chaplain, Lt. Gen. Sir John Lorimer, Colonel Commandant of The Parachute Regiment, Capt. Tom Shaw, ADC to Col. Comdt. Pony Major L/Cpl Jamie Richards and Drum Major Jonathon Cook, who played the Last Post and Reveille.

Also, for interest, as reported in the Daily Mail, Dep Comd 16 Air Assault Brigade, has been suspended for holding a drinks session with 15 senior colleagues. Col. Andrew Jackson, (he is a scouser, an old boy of St Mary’s College, Crosby), is accused of flouting a ban that he was meant to help enforce at Merville Barracks!!!

Now that things seem to be easing, lets hope that we can soon again look forward to resuming our monthly meetings.

Best wishes and stay safe and sane,

Col. Joe Harkon, President, PRA, Liverpool Branch




The list below shows the events that have yet to be cancelled. This will be updated on the website on a regular basis. Further event information is available on the website so please take a look:


All cancelled events have been removed but details will be retained for the 2021 event. Once details of these have been confirmed please let me know.

If you have any dates for 2021 please let me know at the earliest opportunity so that they can be added to the diary. Full details of events should be sent when available and updated accordingly.

13 Sep 20                 Arnhem Service                               Somerby

5 Sep 20                  PARAS 10                                          Catterick

17-20 Sep                 Arnhem 76                                       Netherlands

5 Nov 20                  Field of Remembrance                     Westminster Abbey

6 Nov 20                  St Lawrence Jewry                            London

7 Nov 20                  PARAS 10                                           Colchester

8 Nov 20                  Remembrance Day                             London


Best wishes and stay safe,

Arthur Cheetham, Secretary, PRA Liverpool Branch.

Circulated for information. Dated Tue, 21 Apr 2020 11:46
Florence was the widow of Joe Mawdsley, an Arnhem veteran, who passed away in November 2019.


Arthur C




Sorry to be the bearer of bad news - Florence Mawdsley has passed away. She’d had a fall some weeks ago and had broken her collarbone.

She was with Trish when she passed and has slipped away peacefully.

Please keep Flo and all the family in your prayers


Kindest regards


Elaine x

Dear ladies & gentlemen

It is my sad duty to inform members that Peter Blackmore passed away this morning after a long illness. Peter served with the 12th/13th  and 4th battalions and had been an active and popular member of the Liverpool branch of the PRA for many years.  He will be greatly missed by his many friends and airborne brothers. I will keep members informed of any further information but it is anticipated that under the present circumstances mourners at the funeral will be strictly confined to close family only.

I will send a condolences card to Mrs Blackmore on behalf of the branch

Kind regards,

Arthur C,

Branch Secretary,

PRA Liverpool

Lee Crichton









It is with shock and sadness that must inform members of the death of Lee Crichton. Today it was reported on social media that he had died yesterday 10.30 pm 28/03/2020. Lee was a hugely popular figure amongst Parachute Regiment Association and the wider airborne community, he was a tremendous military charity fundraiser, Lee was one half of the duo who formed the Pegasus Appreciation Group, along with Rich Greasley raising well over £100,0000 for various airborne good causes, he will be sorely missed, more details will be published when we have more information.
Our deepest sympathy to his wife Sue, son Ben and daughter Louise.


Further to my email of the 23rd February:
Bill Conway's funeral will take place on Wednesday 18th March at 1.00pm.
The Landican Crematorium
Central Chapel
Arrowe Park Road
CH49 5LW. 


Bill served with 3 Para and took part in the Suez drop in 1956. I have been told that his family would appreciate an airborne presence at his funeral, together with standards if possible.


Arthur C

It is once more my sad duty to inform members of the death of another airborne brother. I have been informed by Peter Smedley that Bill Conway, Chairman of the PRA Wirral Branch passed away on Friday 21st February, in Arrowe Park Hospital, Wirral, where he was being treated for a respiratory problem.

Peter is in touch with Bill's family and will keep me informed of arrangements for the funeral etc. which I will circulate in due course, as I understand that Bill is well known to many of the Liverpool members.


Arthur C

The funeral of Geoff Morris will take place on Wednesday 4th March at 12 Midday at Thornton Crematorium, Lydiate Lane, L23 1DP. Following the service Jenny and Anna would like to invite you to celebrate Geoff’s lifetime adventures at the Northern Cricket Club, Moor Park, Elm Avenue, Crosby L23 2SX.

It is my sad duty to inform members that Geoff Morris passed away at 3.15pm today after a long illness. Geoff served with 4 Para and had been an active member of the PRA Liverpool branch and was the Branch Secretary for many years until his deteriorating health forced him to stand down. I will circulate more information when it becomes available and inform RHQ in due course, for publication in "Last Post".

Arthur C

PRA Liverpool,

Branch Secretary


To assist I am showing below the information you would need if you wish to pay by bank transfer.
If you do this it is important, please, ensure that you show your name as the payee.


Bank: HSBC

Name: Parachute regimental Association (Liverpool Branch)

Sort code: 40:29:39

Account Number: 91363808

A message from our treasure Mike Hurst regarding two forthcoming funerals.


Jimmy Hutchinson CSM A Company passed away Monday, last week. His funeral service is to be held on Friday 14th February in Sandbach. The address for the church is :-

St. Mary's Church

High Street



CW11 1HD


Service commences at 11:00am

Dress to be blazer and regimental tie.


Another ex member of 4 Para and 2 Para Terry Nelson has also, recently, passed away and his internment is to be held at:-

Anfield Crematorium.

238 Priory Road


Merseyside L4 2SL


Commencing 2:00pm Friday 7th February 2020

Dress as above


On a lighter note we have begun to determine the programme for the 5 Ways of Wellbeing initiative to develop the metal health and well being for members of The Parachute Regimental Association (Liverpool Branch) regardless of age, physical or metal ability, it is to be truly inclusive. However to do this we all need to participate in the design stage of the programme, which is what is currently being done, under the management of Beacon Counselling (BCT), Patrick Goodison and Ian Whiteside.


To assist them please find attached background notes from an initial meeting and a small questionnaire (which I would ask, please, that you complete) to show you the overall plan, however finite details have yet to be determined. This information will be used by the team to develop the programme and as a base line to show improvements in the groups involved.

Please click on the button to access notes.


From our secretary with regard to Tatton Park:

Dear all,


I attended the PRA North West Regional quarterly meeting on Sunday 19th January. The main item on the agenda was the progress being made with the various events that would be taking place at the event that is being organised to commemorate the formation of the British airborne forces. 


Lt. Col. Dave Macaulay, together with other committee members provided summaries on matters that they have been dealing with and things seem to be slowly but surely coming together nicely. 


It has been decided that a decent quality boxed buffet lunch will be provided in the banqueting hall at Tatton Park, as previously reported. In order to prevent gate crashers after a free lunch, entry will be by ticket only. As the seating capacity is limited to some 350 persons, tickets will be limited to this amount. It was reported at the meeting that almost half the tickets have already been sold and paid for throughout the region, even though the actual tickets have not yet been printed. In order to secure sufficient tickets for our members, I have ordered and paid for a block of 30 tickets. At our next meeting on 4th February, I will be taking the names of members and their guests wishing to attend and will require payment at the time. I emphasize that as this is likely to be a popular event, tickets will be sold on a first come first-served basis.




Arthur C 

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