- By Marc Waddington
A ONE stop shop for veterans returning to civillian life was officially opened in Everton.
Mayor of Liverpool Joe Anderson and representatives of the army and navy were on hand to open up the new Breck Road premises, along with veterans of recent conflicts.
An army piper stood and played by two Bren gun carriers that were brought along especially for the event.
The drop-in shop will offer help to people who have left the armed forces in recent years, offering advice on career prospects and pointing them in the direction of organisations than can give help and counselling to anyone suffering from post traumatic stress disorder.
The city’s Masonic lodges also handed over a check and some computer equipment to help get the project off the ground.
And by the end of the event, the first customer had come through the door.
Veteran Russell Start, who also attended, said: “Someone came in saying he needed help to get work and they were able to get straight down to helping him, which was really good to see.”
Liverpool Cllr Peter Mitchell, the council’s armed forces champion, said: “We are fully committed to making sure that support is readily accessible to veterans and their families and we providing help on their doorstep.”
The opening of the shop follows the council’s recent move to ensure that people who have lived outside the city, either on service or stationed elsewhere, will now be given the same priority on local housing waiting lists as everyone else.
Previously, they were not considered to have “local” status if they had been living outside the city boundaries before returning home.