Leonard Cheshire Disability has been chosen as the official charity partner for RAF No. 617 Squadron, commonly known as the ‘Dambusters’.
The partnership takes place as No. 617 Squadron commemorates the 70th anniversary of the Dambusters Raid this year. Members of the Squadron will also be volunteering at Cheshire House, the nearest Leonard Cheshire Disability residential home to their base in Moray, and will be taking part in a variety of fundraising challenges throughout the year.
The partnership is expected to raise around £70,000 for the disability charity.
Group Captain Leonard Cheshire
The partnership is based on the fact that the charity’s founder, Group Captain Leonard Cheshire, led No. 617 Squadron for eight months during the Second World War. He was one of the youngest Commanding Officers and was awarded the Victoria Cross in 1944.
Today's No. 617 Squadron Leader, Mark Jackson, said: "Many of us in the Squadron already volunteer for the charity so we know first-hand what great work they do to support disabled people to gain independence and live the life they want. It is also really important for us to recognise the fact that Leonard Cheshire himself played a huge part in the history of the Squadron."
Fundraising events include a parliamentary dinner at the House of Commons, a gala screening of the original Dambusters film and a commemorative service at Lincoln Cathedral.
Leonard Cheshire Disability will also be launching its own fundraising challenge in honour of the partnership. Called ‘The Dambusters Le Court to Lossiemouth Run – 700 miles in 7 days’, the run will take place between 28 September and 4 October, starting at the site of the first Cheshire Home, Le Court in Hampshire, and finishing at the home of No. 617 Squadron, RAF Lossiemouth in Inverness.
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