Britsh Wireless for the Blind Logo

Letter from Dame Vera Lynn discovered as singer celebrates 100th birthday


A letter written by Dame Vera Lynn in response to a fundraising appeal she did for British Wireless has been discovered as the singer celebrates her 100th birthday.

The letter with the Roberts R505, issued in 1974
The letter with the Roberts R505, issued in 1974

British Wireless has discovered a handwritten letter from Dame Vera Lynn which she wrote in response to a 1973 fundraising appeal.

We came across the piece of our history for sale on eBay and now have the item back in our possession. 

The White Cliffs of Dover singer, who is releasing an album this month to celebrate her 100th birthday on March 20th, issued an appeal for funds for the charity in the 1970s.

The letter, which is on British Wireless headed paper, reads: “Thank you so much for your kind gift in response to my appeal.

“Your kindness will bring pleasure to some blind person who will be as grateful as I am for your generosity this Christmas.

“All best wishes for 1974. Yours Vera Lynn.”

The team at British Wireless contacted the person who was selling the letter and she kindly reduced the price so it could be added to the charity’s archives, which hold a number of historical items including a similar letter from Sir Winston Churchill’s wife Clementine.

The seller told BWBF she had obtained the letter about 30 years ago after attending an auction.

She was a book collector and went to the event in Brighton, where she bid on some Vera Lynn and Gracie Fields memorabilia collections. 

Her grandson recently suggested putting the letter on eBay and it wasn’t until the charity made contact that she realised it was still providing radios to people with sight loss.

CEO Margaret Grainger said: “We’re delighted to have this wonderful letter to add to our collection.

“With such a long and proud history of supporting blind people around the country, it’s great to be reminded of past appeals.

“It’s lovely to have a link to Dame Vera Lynn, and especially to discover the letter at this time when she is preparing to celebrate such a milestone birthday.

“We’d like to say thank you to the seller for letting us have it at a reduced price.” 

Share this page:
Click an icon to share on your favourite social media site

Latest News

Blind Glasgow residents to benefit thanks to grant

Blind and partially sighted people in Glasgow will benefit from free radios thanks to a grant BWBF has received. Read the story.

We’re celebrating International Women’s Day

Today is International Women’s Day – an annual event to celebrate the achievements of women all around the globe. We’re marking it by looking at some of our wonderful female recipients, supporters and our CEO, who has led the charity for more than 30 years. Read the story.

It’s World Book Day!

World Book Day is an annual celebration of authors, books, illustrators and reading so we’re looking at how important audio books are to someone who is visually impaired. Read the story.

BWBF joins forces with another charity to help North Yorkshire blind

British Wireless has teamed up with another sight loss organisation to support more visually impaired people in Scarborough, Whitby and Filey. Read the story.

Trust donation will support Scotland’s visually impaired

Visually impaired people in Scotland will benefit thanks to a grant British Wireless has received. Read the story.

Radio listening figures rise in last quarter of 2016

Figures released today show the number of people tuning into their radios every week increased during the last quarter of 2016. Read the story.

View older news