Music revives memories at the Linburn Centre

Posted: 20/01/2017 | Scottish War Blinded

Since May 2016, Scottish War Blinded have been involved in a fantastic UK-wide project ‘Heroes in Harmony’ which was made possible by a grant from the Aged Veteran’s Fund. 

The project has seen fellow charity Music in Hospitals providing 1,200 live music sessions for ex-service men and women in settings across the UK. 

The project means that the veterans who visit the Linburn Centre have enjoyed a series of fully funded live music sessions, performed by professional musicians, at no cost to the charity. At the music sessions this year, forgotten memories have been revived and all kinds of emotions released by the music, allowing our team to get insights into individuals’ backgrounds and tastes, which they might have been reticent about, before the music awakened nostalgia. 

The music sessions have been a great success, and deputy centre manager Jacqui Salter commented: ‘We would certainly like to explore continuing to offer the music sessions as a regular event as the musicians lift everyone’s mood and bring people together for a sing-along.’

At an interactive session on the 19 January, Hugh Maguire, a veteran who saw service on D-Day in 1944 found himself taken back to his childhood in Enniskillen by Irish musican Ciaran Dorris’s rendition of Irish folk songs. Veteran Bernard Matthews’ rich baritone complimented the musicians’ voices and he lead a performance of ‘Danny Boy,’ to much applause. Bernard later commented ‘it’s something different and always great fun to get involved with.’

Our thanks go to partner charity Music in Hospitals for initiating this great partnerships, which has been enjoyed by many visually impaired older veterans at our centre.

Scottish War Blinded provides free support, across Scotland and at our centre in West Lothian, to veterans of the armed forces, with a visual impairment – no matter how they lost their sight. We support ex-service men and women who have served in the Armed Forces, including Reserves, Queen Alexandra Nursing Corps and National Service.

If you or someone you know could benefit from Scottish War Blinded’s activities, call us free today on 0800 035 6409 to find out more.