A volunteer for the Blaenavon Royal British Legion has won a Community Award at the Welsh Veterans Awards for going above and beyond for his local armed forces community.
72-year-old Cyril Turner, a former soldier with the South Wales Borderers, was nominated for the award by Torfaen Council’s Armed Forces Champion for dedicating his latter years to recognising and improving the lives of veterans in Blaenavon.
Cyril is a dedicated custodian of the Blaenavon town clock, a memorial clock to the fallen in the First and Second World War.
With the help of volunteers, Cyril has transformed the gardens surrounding the memorial clock, to create a Garden of Remembrance, with flower beds and benches and a tranquil place to reflect.
He was the main instigator in researching and collecting the names of those veterans from the town, whose names did not appear on the cenotaph from other historical conflicts.
His work has meant that the names of lives lost during the Boer War, Korean War and the Northern Ireland conflicts are remembered.
Being an active member of the local branch of the Royal British Legion for over 25 years, Cyril, together with his partner Lesley, also manages the Royal British Legion shop in the town, raising vital funds for charity.
A Standard Bearer for the Royal British Legion, Cyril never misses an opportunity to raise awareness of the Armed Forces, the conflicts and the good work of the military in protecting the Nation.
Going way beyond the usual, local commemorations, he attends school services, events in other parts of wales and on the continent, all on a voluntary basis.
His work with the Commonwealth War Graves Commission, Cyril maintains the 7 graves located at St. Peter’s Churchyard, Blaenavon
Councillor Jon Horlor, Armed Forces Champion for Torfaen, said, “It’s fair to say that Cyril has gone beyond the expectations of a veteran, spending his spare time in ensuring that all who have served are recognised and commemorated.
His tireless work is not going unrecognised, and we feel strongly, that a nomination for the Community Award would be fitting for a man who will go that extra mile, as an ambassador to the Armed Forces within the Blaenavon Community.”