Commemorating Battle of Britain
Tuesday 15th September 2015 marks 75 years since the Battle of Britain.
The Battle of Britain is the name given to the Second World War air campaign waged by the German Air Force against the United Kingdom during the summer and autumn of 1940. The Battle of Britain was the first major campaign to be fought entirely by air forces, and was also the largest and most sustained aerial bombing campaign to date.
On Sunday, 15 September 1940, the German Air Force launched its largest and most concentrated attack against London in the hope of drawing out the RAF into a battle of annihilation. Around 1,500 aircrafts took part in the air battles which lasted until dusk. The action was the climax of the Battle of Britain.
RAF Fighter Command defeated the German raids. The German Air Force formations were dispersed by a large cloud base and failed to inflict severe damage on the city of London.
The pilots of the RAF, who became known as “The Few”, successfully stood up to wave after wave of German fighters and bombers.
In his famous speech, wartime leader Winston Churchill spoke of the sacrifices made during this period saying: “Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few.”
Veterans of WWII are still living in our communities today and still struggling with the traumas of what they saw. As well as this, among the communities of Greater Manchester and further afield, we have veterans from more recent wars such as the Falklands and Iraq wars.
Veterans Information, based in Tameside provides a safe space for veterans to share their stories, receive emotional support and be sign-posted to any other services they may need.
Veterans Information’s primary aim is a single point of contact where veterans, serving soldiers, and their families can access a wide variety of services and information that can support them to lead fulfilling and independent lives, with a particular focus on mental health issues and employment and education.
The group has been working in the veteran’s sector in various voluntary roles for the last four years and is made up of ex military.
They have links with veterans’ homeless charities and other veterans’ charities that offer help and support.
Many veterans suffer depression and have mental health issues and releasing the internal chatter at Veterans Information CIC helps individuals to focus on going forward and looking at employment and changing their lives and their family’s lives.
Attendees of Veterans Information CIC have talked to many veterans and they all suffer from hyper-vigilance, a feeling of being aware of everything in the environment as a constant possible threat. Because of this, they have researched the use of floatation therapy, an experience felt similar to deep meditation, where everything is slowed down and the veterans feel relaxed. Their internal chatter and fears and concerns disappear. Many veterans suffer stress and anxiety once back in wider society, and flotation tanks can help the individuals cope with these feelings.
The uniqueness of this treatment is that every veteran experiences different feelings as they have a weightlessness feeling, which also reduces tense and tight feelings on their joints, specifically in the pelvic, lower back, shoulders and neck area, which are all areas which have pressure on them in the field of battle.
Forever Manchester today remembers the 520 men who were killed serving with Fighter Command during the Battle of Britain, including those from the ten boroughs of Greater Manchester.
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