Veteran shares his story with royalty

A veteran who works for a charity helping others with the transition from military to civilian life has discussed his work with royalty.

Neil Tully, from Seaton Delaval, was medically discharged from the Corps of Royal Engineers in 2012 after 16 years service.

And now the veteran works for Forward Assist, a north east veteran charity who support local veterans with their transition from military life.

His post is funded by The Poppy Factory, who recently held a celebratory event at Admiralty House in Westminster to mark helping 500 wounded, injured and sick veterans into sustainable employment.

Neil was one of those in attendance and able to discuss his work with HRH the Duchess of Cornwall.

He said: “I discussed how Forward Assist and The Poppy Factory have ensured I remain in employment despite the medical issues I face.”

Neil joined the Corps of Royal Engineers in 1996, training as a mechanical fitter and serving in Northern Ireland, Kosovo, Falkland Islands, Iraq, Germany, Cyprus and Afghanistan.

He was medically discharged in 2012 for a lower back injury.

Neil, who was diagnosed with epilepsy last April, helped four veterans gain employment, eight veterans on to training courses and 15 veterans into volunteering while an employment mentor with Forward Assist.

He has now been given an office based, business development role, thanks to help from the Poppy Factory and their funding.

Neil said: “I am forever grateful for the opportunity that has been given to me by Forward Assist and The Poppy Factory – a situation that can only be understood by other veterans.”