Setting out in his father’s footsteps - The Evesham Observer

Setting out in his father’s footsteps

Evesham Editorial 24th Aug, 2019   0

A SEDGEBERROW son will follow in his father’s Normandy footsteps 75 years later when he takes part in the D-Day Cycle Ride to raise money for SSAFA, the Armed Forces charity.

Philip Jones, 58, will be travelling to Normandy on Wednesday, September 4 and will be covering more than 250 miles by bike over four days to commemorate those who fought and fell in the D-Day campaign in 1944.

His father, Major Louis Jones MC, was among the British soldiers to land on Gold Beach on the morning of June 6, 1944 in the largest seaborne invasion in history to begin the liberation of German-occupied France from Nazi control.

After serving in the Army himself for 23 years, the Evesham resident has seen first-hand the work SSAFA does for the Armed Forces community.

“I need a challenge and I have always pledged to visit my father’s beach in Normandy,” Phillip said.

“My father was a tank commander and landed on Gold Beach.  This is my homage to him and his comrades.

“I’m incredibly honoured to be joining the D-Day Cycle Ride team to commemorate those who fought and fell in D-Day and the Battle of Normandy.

“This is the perfect opportunity to give something back to this wonderful charity. The money raised from the D-Day Cycle Ride will help SSAFA continue to provide lifelong support to the Armed Forces community,” he added.

Philip will lay a wreath to those who fell and hopes to raise £1,500.

SSAFA, the Armed Forces charity, has been providing lifelong support to our Forces and their families since 1885.

Last year its teams of volunteers and employees helped more than 82,000 people in need, from Second World War veterans to those who have served in more recent conflicts, and their families.

The charity believes behind every uniform is a person and aim to provide support for those in need at any time for as long as it’s needed.

James Grant, head of corporate fund-raising and events at SSAFA, said: “We’re incredibly grateful to Philip for signing up to take part in the D-Day Cycle Ride. It promises to be an incredibly special event to commemorate the lives lost at D-Day and the Battle of Normandy.”

Visit for more. To find out more about SSAFA, the Armed Forces charity or to get involved, visit

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