Nuclear charity given £25 million initiative after efforts of Moulton couple

Doug and Sandie Hern of Moulton whose efforts have helped secure a �25 million "ex gratia gesture" from the Government to support of British nuclear test veterans and their families.  Photo by Tim Wilson.
Doug and Sandie Hern of Moulton whose efforts have helped secure a �25 million "ex gratia gesture" from the Government to support of British nuclear test veterans and their families. Photo by Tim Wilson.
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The efforts of a Moulton couple to gain recognition for nuclear test veterans and their families have been rewarded with a new £25 million Government fund.

Doug and Sandie Hern campaigned as members of the British Nuclear Test Veterans Association (BNTVA) on behalf of more than 20,000 British servicemen who were part of the British Nuclear Testing Programme that ran between 1952 and 1967.

Mr Hern (79) himself was posted to Christmas Island, near Singapore, in 1957 and spent a year there while nuclear weapons testing was carried out.

“Over the years, individuals have campaigned to raise awareness of the roles they played during the Cold War (between 1947 and 1991) in stabilising both this country and the other nuclear powers.

“Then in November 2013, it was announced in the Budget that funding would be allocated to veterans, including British nuclear test veterans and now the Government is making a £25 million ex gratia payment for need, not entitlement, to benefit anyone involved in the nuclear industry.”

A Nuclear Community Charity Fund will use the money to go ahead with projects in support of nuclear test veterans and their families, including research into the physical, psychological and medical needs of those involved in the nuclear test programme.

Individuals have campaigned to raise awareness of the roles they played during the Cold War (between 1947 and 1991) in stabilising both this country and the other nuclear powers

British nuclear test veteran Doug Hern (79) of Moulton

Mr Hern said: “It’s something that needs to be done and we thank those who participated in making this funding happen.”

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