The Summer Garden Party

By kind permission of Her Majesty The Queen, we hold an annual Garden Party at Buckingham Palace for the benefit of War Pensioners and service personnel who have received compensation from the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme.

The Garden Party is hosted by one or more senior members of the Royal Family. Some of our beneficiaries will be presented to a Royal guest who will chat to them about their service experiences. For men and women who are proud to have served their country this is a huge honour and a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity which they will never forget, the impact of which cannot be overstated.

This event brings together more than 2,000 beneficiaries of all ages and services with their carers and escorts. Celebrities from the worlds of sport and entertainment mingle with guests, a delicious afternoon tea is served and stirring music from a full military band complete the special atmosphere.

We are indebted to Her Majesty for continuing to grant us the huge privilege of staging this unique event which we are proud to deliver on behalf of all the Armed Services and the Merchant Navy, as well as the wider service community.

“The experience of a lifetime, it was just outstanding, everyone made us feel so special. We talked to all sorts of people we have never met before: Chelsea Pensioners, Gurkhas, soldiers, sailors and airmen, several very badly injured veterans from more recent conflicts. Complete strangers greeted us like long lost friends, it was a genuine honour to be there.” - Zak Coombs

The Christmas Tea Party

In a tradition dating back to 1921, we are hugely privileged to be permitted to hold an annual Christmas Tea Party for War Pensioners and recipients of the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme in the State Apartments of St. James’s Palace.

One or more senior members of the Royal Family will be in attendance and will make their way around the Throne, Entrée and Queen Anne Rooms chatting to each of our beneficiaries at their tables, listening to their stories and experiences, and delighting them with their genuine interest. As they do so, some 280 guests enjoy a sumptuous afternoon tea whilst being entertained by singers, magicians, caricaturists, balloonists, silhouettists, celebrities and a military quintet.

After the Royal guests depart, everyone moves to the adjoining Picture Gallery for the afternoon’s finale; a highly entertaining variety show featuring top class comedy, music and song with something for everyone.

This unique event always brings a great deal of pleasure, joy and cheer to our guests. It is an opportunity to meet other service men and women of all ages, swop stories, share experiences, make new friends and renew old acquaintances. The magnificent location and happy, relaxed atmosphere help to create lasting memories and everyone leaves with their spirits raised.

“I have been provided with a great feeling of inclusiveness, a new-found brotherhood and invigorated wellbeing. The event at St. James’s Palace far exceeded expectation. I met some truly inspirational people.” - John Batty