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Colchester veterans attend the opening of the ‘War, Art & Reconcilliation’ exhibition

29 Oct Colchester veterans attend the opening of the ‘War, Art & Reconcilliation’ exhibition

Veterans from the Help for Heroes Recovery Centre in Colchester recently attended the opening of ‘War, Art & Reconcilliation’ at The Minories Gallery in Colchester.

The exhibition, which marks the centenary of the end of World War One, is comprised of work by local artists including the Recovery Centre’s Resident Artist. Jan Scott volunteers her time at Chavasse VC House to guide veterans during their Activty Tuesday art sessions.

One veteran to benefit attending Colchester Recovery Centre is David Kelley. The ex-RAF regiment gunner sustained injuries to his knees during a training exercise which led to his eventual medical discharge. Nearly 40 years after the incident he still struggles with post-traumatic stress. Dave contibuted a pastel drawing and several sketches to the exhibition.

“I have to really concentrate when doing art, so it takes my mind off other stresses and anxieties. Im almost in another world. I love the Activity Tuesday sessions; in particular the banter with others in a similar situation to you; something that’s missed when you leave the military”.

“Colchester Recovery Centre provides me with a place of safety and comradeship. I still have PTSD, anxiety and depression but I also have the satisfaction of knowing I can achieve something amazing if I put my mind to it. Help for Heroes has been integral to that”.

Dave’s main work of art sees a battlefield from the viewpoint of a pilot; today and the same scene 100 years later. Not only does it signify the end of World War One but it remembers the 100 year anniversay of the RAF.

If you are a wounded, injured or sick veteran and would like support from Help for Heroes you can get in contact with the Recovery Centre in Colchester here:

You can see the ‘War, Art & Reconcilliation’ at The Minories Gallery in Colchester unti 11th November.