A happy Christmas for blind Burnley veteran Harry
An elderly and partially-sighted veteran from Burnley who had no-one to spend Christmas with has been invited to spend the festive period with his peers at Llandudno.
Widower Harry Studholme (87), who would otherwise be alone at Christmas, will spend the week at Blind Veterans UK’s training and rehabilitation centre in the Welsh seaside resort.
Unfortunately, Harry’s wife died in 2008 and the couple had no children. He went on to move in to a one bedroom, warden assisted flat and relies greatly on his guide dog Watson.
This year is especially important for Harry to be able to spend Christmas in Llandudno as it’s the 10 year anniversary of his wife’s passing.
Asked about what it meant to Harry, he said: “Christmas is all about being able to spend time with loved ones and to share those special memories with.
“Thanks to Blind Veterans UK, I won’t be alone this year as they have opened their doors to welcome me. They have been there for me when I needed them and even at this time of the year, they have made sure I am not alone.”
What Harry may lack in sight, he certainly makes up for it with his enthusiasm to life. Harry is able to shop for himself locally and even takes a walk around the market occasionally.
Prior to losing his sight, Harry was an avid golfer but now finds the same pleasure while listening to his audio books and his music on his much loved CD player. With the support of Blind Veterans UK, Harry has been given an Optrex scanner and some magnification aids to help him with his daily tasks like reading his post.
Born in 1931 and brought up in Lancashire, Harry initially worked in a paper mill before joining the Royal Signals in 1948.
Harry served in many places including tours of Egypt in the Canal Zone before being discharged in 1953 as a corporal.
He would go on to work for the electricity board but would eventually be forced to retire at the age of 52 due to sight loss which was caused by a retinal haemorrhages.