Chelsea Pensioner and poppies at Charfield church festival

CHELSEA Pensioner Michael Allen will be guest of honour when Charfield's village church holds its summer festival.

Mr Allen, 72, used to serve in the military police with the late husband of Rosemarie Berry, who co-ordinates a team of fund raisers at St John's Church.

He also has friends in Chipping Sodbury and was pleased to accept the invitation to the festival, which features a fete and flower festival, together with a closing Songs of Praise.

Mrs Berry said: "Michael is one of the guides at the Royal Hospital, Chelsea, and he will be here to chat to villagers, many of who will never have seen a Chelsea Pensioner before."

The fete on Saturday, July 5, starts at 11am, with stalls, games and entertainment scheduled.

Guide dogs for the blind will also be at the event and the church will be open for the flower festival, which will feature poppies to help mark the centenary of the outbreak of World War One.

Floral displays will continue on Sunday, July 6, from 11am, with the Songs of Praise service taking place at 6pm.

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