The Taxi Charity for Military Veterans took a small group of veterans to The Netherlands over the weekend to visit the Airborne Museum
This museum visit was originally planned for 2020 when the charity volunteers and veterans arrived in The Netherlands on 12 March, unfortunately the same day that pandemic restrictions were announced, and the museum closed. Two years later they were finally able to make their long-awaited return.
The group from the Taxi Charity was welcomed to the Museum by the Director Ronnie Weijers, who said, “It’s a great honour for me to be able to welcome veterans to the museum. Your courage and your sacrifice will always be remembered, and we are so glad you are here.”
Veteran Dickie Forrester, said, “The Museum is very impressive, entertaining, and realistic. Most of those who fought here in Arnhem are no longer with us, so this has been a very emotional visit. As time marches on it’s easy to not remember, but we mustn’t forget, and fortunately I think there are enough people in the younger generations who want to carry on the traditions of remembrance.”
Dick Goodwin, Vice President of the Taxi Charity said, “It has been two years since we were in The Netherlands, and we were delighted to finally see the wonderful new displays and refit at the Airborne Museum. The people of The Netherlands always give us the warmest welcome and everywhere we go people from each generation come forward to personally thank the veterans for fighting for their freedom.”
After the visit to the museum the veterans enjoyed lunch in the Hotel De Wereld in Wageningen, where the official surrender was signed. They then visited the Commonwealth War Graves Cemetery in Oosterbeek where they laid wreaths and visited the graves of their friends and comrades.
To find out more about the support the Taxi Charity offers veterans visit www.taxicharity.org
Trip Itinerary 24 -27 February 2022
24 February – caught the overnight ferry form Harwich to The Hook of Holland
25 February – Veterans met the Mayoress of Renkum over lunch.
Dinner with guests from, Market Garden Foundation, Airborne Commemorations Foundation The Airborne Museum, Airborne Wandeltocht, The 4- 5 May Committee and the Royal Netherlands Army.
26 February – Visit to Airborne Museum in Oosterbeek. Lunch at Hotel de Wereld in Wageningen. Visit to the Oosterbeek CWGC.
27 February – Return to the UK.
About the Taxi Charity
The Taxi Charity is run by volunteer London black taxi drivers and has been supporting thousands of veterans of all ages since 1948. The charity arranges free trips to the Netherlands, Belgium, and France, for acts of commemoration and days out to museums, concerts, or fundraising events in the UK, to catch up with friends and comrades.
The Charity worked tirelessly during the pandemic to ensure veterans received regular contact by sending out a greeting card each month, gifts to mark the 75th anniversaries of VE and VJ day, stockings at Christmas and arranging Guards of Honour at veterans’ funerals. Volunteers have also helped with regular phone calls, food shopping, transport to hospital appointments, and more recently taking veterans for their Coronavirus injections.
The charity was awarded the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service in June 2021.
To fund and facilitate their work, the charity is reliant on generous donations from members of the public, businesses, and trusts.