THE first group of Light Dragoon Guards, wounded in Afghanistan, arrived in Majorca yesterday where they will be spending the week as guests of Sheila and David at their Pollensa estate and a host of bars and restaurants and members of the British community have rallied round to make sure that the wounded and their partners are well looked after during their holiday.
The group of eight, who flew into Palma yesterday, have all been through the MoD Defence Medical Rehabilitation Centre Headley Court, but the welfare officer who has come out to see the set up here for himself, told the Bulletin yesterday that some of the guys still have issues to deal with.
However, the eight Guards are back with their regiment, which is currently based at Swanton Moreley in Norfolk, but, just like the thousands of British troops who have been wounded in Afghanistan, and Iraq before that, for many it is a physical and mental battle along the road to recovery.
Sheila said this week that the idea to make her finca available for wounded soldiers to come out and enjoy a break was sparked by a plea made through the Bulletin last year for help for 21-year-old Royal Marine Andy Grant who was seriously wounded on the front line in Afghanistan.
The British community on the island gave Andy and his girlfriend a holiday to remember at a time when Andy was struggling with the highs and lows of rehabilitation at Headley Court.
Sheila and David are going to be putting up a second group at the end of this month and the final group of Dragoon Guards will be coming in October and it is going to be during that week that Sheila is going to need some help.
We definitely need some help in October, that said, we will welcome any kind of help in any shape or form for each of the three groups, she said.
Help is also wanted by Corps Welfare Warrant Officer Cliff Johnson at REME, the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers based in Reading.
Johnson was previously at Headley Court and knows all about what the British community here in Majorca did for Andy Grant and wants to do the same for some of the wounded in his regiment.
Johnson said that he would not only like to give some of the wounded in Afghanistan a boost and a break in the sun but also some of the victims from Iraq.
It's amazing what's going on out there on the island. It's great and you wouldn't have any idea just how important a trip like that is for the wounded. It gives them a major incentive to make positive progress, he told the Bulletin.
Should anybody wish to help Sheila or Cliff Johnson please email the Bulletin at firstname.lastname@example.org and your details will be passed on if full confidentiality.