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Heroes Return 2

Providing Lottery funding to help World War II veterans take part in commemorative visits
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To commemorate the events leading up to the end of World War II, the Big Lottery Fund set up the Heroes Return programme, which funds veterans, and their spouses and carers, to revisit the places where they served and remember the sacrifice made by their fallen friends and comrades.

The Big Lottery Fund was sad to hear of the passing of Cwmbran WW2 veteran Dennis Whitcombe in July 2014. Mr Whitcombe and comrades from the Pontypool Branch of the Royal Welsh Regimental Association went on a Heroes Return trip in 2010 to attend a Remembrance Day service in Weymouth. You can read about his trip and his heroic efforts during the war. We would like to thank his family for sharing his experiences with us, he will be sadly missed. 

Funding size:
£165 - £8,140
Total available:
Application deadline:
01/01/2016 00:00:00

What’s it all about?

The Heroes Return 2 programme is now closed as planned.

Since 2004 we are proud to have provided £29 million to support over 58,000 veterans of the Second World War and their spouses and carers to undertake commemorative visits.

You can read about some of their experiences here:
Heroes Return
Memories of War
Heroes Return blog
Second World War commemorative booklets

You may also be interested in the following:

The Big Lottery Fund has invested £35 million in the Forces in Mind Trust supporting the psychological well-being and successful and sustainable transition of veterans and their families into civilian life

Veterans Reunited Evaluation

Review of our programmes that have supported older people

There are a number of organisations that support veterans. You can find out about some of them here:

Veterans UK
The British Legion
COBSEO (Confederation of Service Charities)

Heroes Return 2 provides Lottery funding to help World War II veterans that saw active service and are resident in the UK or the Republic of Ireland to take part in commemorative visits (within the UK and overseas) to mark the anniversary of events that led to the end of WWII.

Big Lottery Fund Chair of Peter Ainsworth speaks about the veterans and the programme.

Heroes Return by BigLotteryFund

Download the podcast transcript


Organisation Types

  • Voluntary or community organisation


  • Veterans