Bolton’s only veterans’ breakfast club is drumming up support to help make sure is members are “not forgotten".

Ex-servicemen, their families, friends and residents all gathered for a very special edition of their regular breakfast club event at Heywood Young People’s Centre in Great Lever.

They have been meeting there for several months now but this week’s breakfast club, followed by a barbecue, came days after people across the country marked the 80th anniversary of D-Day.

Slaterfield Veterans and Residents Association chairman Simon Skirving said: “There are other things for veterans in Bolton, there’s the drop-in centre and the  Darren Deady Foundation but this is the only breakfast club.

“It’s here for veterans, for residents, basically anybody in the community who wants to come in for the company.”

He added: “The council have been brilliant for us here and I really can’t thank the councillors involved enough.

“The important thing for veterans is that they are not forgotten, because many of them have PTSD or they wouldn’t be leaving the house.

“But to get them to come here, have a chat and go away happy is such a great feeling and it really helps bring that sense of community spirit back.”

The group hosted a D-Day commemorative barbecueThe group hosted a D-Day commemorative barbecue (Image: Newsquest)

The organisation is part of a network of armed forces and veterans breakfast clubs that operates all around the country.

They run their events every Saturday at the Heywood Young People’s Centre at Heywood Park off Lever Street and High Street in Great Lever between 10am and 20p,

One of many ex-servicemen gathered for the D-Day event on Saturday, June 8, which featured a former French marine turned singer and a barbecue, was former Fusilier Barry Pickard.

Barry Pickard says the group is hugely importantBarry Pickard says the group is hugely important (Image: Newsquest)

He said: “It’s great to have places like this where veterans can get out the house, they can chat with like-minded people, have a bit of banter and bring their partners as well.”

He added: “They’re not forgotten, that’s the main thing and they’ve got Simon and the team here to help them as well, they’ve been brilliant.”

The event on Saturday was also attended by the area’s representatives on the council.

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Cllr Richard Silvester said: “The three ward councillors have come here to support the Veterans and Residents Association.

“We always support our veterans and that’s why it was so important for us to be here today.”

He added: “We’ve also been supporting them by growing the Good Area Working Fund, which supports community groups like these and we will continue to do so over time.”

Anyone interested in getting in involved can email