Category Archives: anniversary

Progress Pride Flag

Thanks to Ben for sending this…

The Progress Pride Flag is fluttering proudly outside Abingdon School during LGBTQ+ month.

The Progress Pride flag was created in 2018, based on the mainstream Pride flag but with the addition of a chevron which is comprised of black, brown, blue, pink and white to emphasize the inclusion of Black, Brown, and trans people in the LGBTQ+ community.

Royal British Legion – Centenary

This week marked the centenary of the Royal British Legion – 100 years providing support for the armed forces, campaigning for their interests and promoting Remembrance.

Saturday, May 15th, has been designated RBL 100 and special commemorative badges with the poppy on them have been designed, wreaths will be laid and there will be a Battle of Britain memorial flypast.

Abingdon has long held the poppy close to its heart and the Legion has been a presence in the town since at least 1933. In the past five years Abingdon has donated almost a quarter of a million pounds to the Poppy Appeal – an incredible jump on the £20,000 raised annually a decade ago.

Clare Oldfield, Poppy Appeal Organiser, said: ‘Support in the town is humbling, awe-inspiring and collecting is always an emotional experience. Remember this money comes from donations, nothing has a price on it. This is what people want to give. It is not uncommon for them to give £30, £40 and £50 for a single poppy. Or hundreds of pounds for a wreath.’

The Poppy Appeal in the town is organised and run by the RBL social club in Spring Road, Abingdon – drawing together veterans, cadets, schools, college students and dedicated collectors.

And not even a pandemic was going to stop the town raising thousands of pounds once again when house to house, supermarket and street collections were banned last year.

Covid restrictions meant the club remained closed for this weekend’s RBL 100 celebrations.  It reopens on Monday May 17th to members and their guests. Membership is not limited to the armed forces and Stuart Jackson, club chairman, said: ‘We look forward to being at the heart of the community once more, to celebrating the centenary, to welcome old friends back – and maybe even some new ones.’

If you would like to become a poppy collector or to share your Legion story contact Clare Oldfield on

To find out more about the Royal British Legion go to:

Pictures show one of the RBL 100 badges, and veteran Bob Strachan, a long-term poppy collector.

Europe Day – 9th May

Thankyou to Brian who sent this picture celebrating Europe Day! It shows the European Flag flying above the County Hall Museum in Abingdon.

Brian says, ‘It has been the flag of the Council of Europe since 1955. The UK is a founding member of the Council and, of course, is still a member.’

‘Much later, in 1985, the same flag was also adopted by the EC.’

Happy 100th Birthday

Thank You to Tony for this piece …
Betty Gordon
Betty Gordon raised a glass of bubbly to thank neighbours, friends and carers who had come to wish her a happy 100th birthday at her Abingdon home. They all observed strict social distancing outdoors and cheered as Betty, with obvious delight, cut the cake and showed her birthday card from the Queen.

Other cards came from friends far and wide. Neighbours had provided balloons and streamers, scones and cupcakes and a pile of presents including smoked salmon for breakfast and a T-shirt saying “Betty, the wee Scottie” with a picture of a Scottie dog.

Betty was born on 21 July 1920 in Caithness on the northern tip of Scotland. She remembers walking to primary school through snow that was knee-high. ‘That made me tough,‘ she said. She lived with her parents in Edinburgh after that but when her father died her mother went to London to find work. Betty stayed on at school until she was 16 then went to join her mother in London. She loved looking after children, and had a job with one family for seven years, stopping only when her own son was born.

Betty and her husband Charles moved to Abingdon from Kennington in 1978. They attended St Helen’s Church and did Scottish Country Dancing. They had a son who was tragically killed in a car accident at age 18. For 10 years Betty nursed Charles who had Alzheimer’s disease, pushing him to church in his wheelchair until he died in 1997. Betty then moved to St Nicolas Church which was closer to her home. She helped as sacristan from 2006 to 2012. In 2015 she suffered several strokes and could no longer go to church.