Building a Centre of Excellence in Veteran Care

For the first time in our long history the Royal Hospital Chelsea aims to support, through a new Veteran Outreach programme, those who have served not only in the Army but also in the Royal Navy and Royal Air Force.

"As a veteran of campaigns in Northern Ireland, The Balkans, The Gulf, and latterly two prolonged and very demanding wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, I have seen many comrades leave the Services carrying injuries both mental and physical that will be with them in some form for life. When interviewed by the Commissioners for the post of Governor I therefore stated that if I got the job I would not only do my utmost to ensure that the 300 or so In-Pensioners continue to be cared for to the highest standards, and to preserve our glorious buildings for them and for the Nation, but that I would seek to leverage the influence and reputation of the Royal Hospital Chelsea to provide more direct support to Veterans, particularly the elderly, living outside our Chelsea home. This important programme will deliver on the aspiration to provide Outreach services to tens of thousands of Veterans from all three Services who live outside the Royal Hospital.”

General Sir Adrian Bradshaw KCB OBE DL, Governor

Providing connection and support for veterans

We aim to provide comradeship and a sense of community to veterans of the three Armed Services, in particular to those over the age of 65, who are in need of the company of other veterans who have lived the Service ethos and experienced the unique challenges of military campaigning and war.

A purpose built activity centre on the western side of the site will benefit from a new public entrance to an Outreach, Heritage and Visitor Centre being built at our Chelsea Gate. These facilities will host non-resident veteran programmes.

The Royal Hospital’s extensive grounds and gardens will provide the health and wellbeing benefits of urban green spaces.

Digital outreach will build on the work we began during the Covid lockdowns, providing a virtual community of comradeship for older veterans.

Establishing a national network of support for older veterans across the three Services will enable us to share our model of care with other organisations and work collaboratively to benefit veterans who are socially isolated around the UK.

"Loneliness carries a risk to health which is comparable to smoking 15 cigarettes a day"

Our Founder's vision - to provide for veterans who had so loyally served him and deserved the best possible care - remains as fresh today as it ever was. To develop this new and exciting area of work, we will be seeking support from our community of friends who are passionate about extending our remit across the three services.