Veterans drop-in at Coldstream

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Coldstream Royal British Legion Scotland is hosting weekly drop-in sessions for ex-service personnel, particularly those suffering post traumatic stress disorder.

Every Monday afternoon starting next Monday, April 7, the doors to the legion hall behind Coldstream Parish Church will be open between 2-4pm, for veterans to have a game of pool, meet up with peers, or just pop in for a coffee. There will also be help available regarding welfare benefits if required.

A RBLS spokesperson said: “The Falklands, Northern Ireland, the Gulf - for most of us these are names from way back. For some, the sights, sounds and feelings are as vivid now as they were all those years ago.

“Our aim is to offer ex-servicemen a place to go where they can get confidential information.”

The precursor to post traumatic stress disorder was shell shock, a condition first recognised in the First World War. At that time Lennel House was used as an officer’s hospital and some of the first research into shell shock was recorded as taking place there.

“Nowadays we know shell shock to be post traumatic stress disorder, and through the media civilians are gaining a little more awareness of the condition. We know it doesn’t affect all those who have served in the forces but for those it does, it can sometimes be a debilitating and isolating disorder.

“Here at the British Legion in Coldstream we are opening an information drop-in each Monday. We will be able to source any help veterans may need with regard to welfare of benefits.

“So we would say to them, please come along to see what this new confidential service can offer you.”