Note: this post was originally written for Masons Moving Group and can be found here.
Woody’s Lodge, a communications and social hub, and the idea of local RAF veteran Russ Kitely, has taken over 2 years in the planning, and with the support of the Royal Navy in Wales and RFCA, Woody’s has been able to establish itself at RN HMS Cambria, Sully, near Barry during February 2017. Since then the charity has received over 1200 visits from veterans of all ages from the Vale and Cardiff areas. Woody’s also acts as base from which 20 charitable and statutory agencies can work, including, The Royal British Legion, NHS, Dept. of Works & Pensions, Recovery Cymru, NEXUS, Barnardos and SSAFA.
With partners Age Cymru and Age Alliance Wales, Woody’s Lodge has been successful in obtaining Armed Forces Covenant Funding in support of the charities’ work with veterans of 60 years and over and is dealing with the lifetime challenges they face, in particular those linked to physical and mental health, social welfare, finances and housing.
Woody’s commemorates local Penarth raised, Royal Marine and member of the Special Boat Service, Paul “Woody” Woodland, who, sadly lost his life whilst in service with the Royal Navy in 2012.
The philosophy of this new charity is close to our heart at Masons, as our father Eric Mason, was himself an RAF veteran and we have a long history of moving members of the RAF, Army, Navy, and their families, around the UK and across Europe. This continues on today through Masons franchise arrangements with Bishops Move. When we first heard about the work that Russ Kitely was initially involved in, we wanted to be part of it in some way, and we are now looking forward to helping Woody’s Lodge grow and thrive.
To find out more about the Woody’s lodge project visit their website here