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Bakewell’s D Day Veteran, Albert Keir

The 6th of June 2024 marked the 80th anniversary of D Day. Albert Keir was there on that day. He was in the Royal Navy, escorting American Troops onto the beaches.

To mark this occasion The Royal British Legion took 20 veterans, including Albert, back to Normandy to remember the fallen, and to take part in the commemorations.

Transported from his home with his son Andrew as companion, they were taken by ferry from Portsmouth. On arrival they were treated ‘royally’ by their hosts, the French.

On the 6th June there were several services along the Normandy Beaches, and our veterans were guests of honour at the new memorial above Gold Beach.

Albert was introduced to may people including His Majesty The King, and The Queen, The Princess Royal, and many military and political leaders from home and abroad. He was presented with a flower by children of the town, and he was very moved by this.

After returning home on the 8th June, Albert insisted on attending the D Day Concert in Bakewell’s Medway Centre, organised by Andy Howard of the Armed Forces and Veterans Breakfast Club, and Chairman of the Bakewell Branch of the Royal British Legion. Albert was entertained by the Bakewell Silver Band, and a video of Albert’s home town of Aberfeldy in Scotland, was shown. He even got to dance with the Town Mayor, Helen Garvey.

On Wednesday 26th June, Albert reached his 99th birthday. The celebrations started early, with a party at Bakewell Town Hall arranged by The Mayor, Town Hall staff and friends.

On Friday 28th June Albert met up with another Navy D Day veteran, John Dennett from Liverpool. A special lunch was held at The Yorkshire Bridge in Bamford, with members of the AFV breakfast club and friends. Albert was presented with a Royal Navy Association tie to go with his famous blazer.

The following day, and another birthday cake at the Farmers Feast in Bakewell, Albert was greeted by a piper who played Happy Birthday to him, and Albert gave a little jig.


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