Sale Sharks hooker, Curtis Langdon, has been made an ambassador of Broughton House, the long-standing Salford Veterans charity and care home
Broughton House is close to becoming the North West’s first Veteran Care Village with a £14 million redevelopment now becoming a reality
After visiting inspiring military veterans at Broughton House late last year as part of a club community programme, Sale Sharks first-team star Curtis Langdon has been made an Ambassador of the charity.
The Sharks hooker met a number of inspiring veterans during the visit, including 95-year-old George Simms, a former WWII marine who survived the D-Day battle despite being wounded twice.
George, who is from Manchester, volunteered at the age of 18 and was selected for service in the elite Royal Marine Commandos. He saw some of the fiercest fighting of the war during the Allied invasions of Sicily and Normandy in World War Two.
The visit took place after George met Curtis at a Sharks game for the first time and made him promise to come and visit Broughton House soon after.
Curtis, along with AJ MacGinty and Sale Sharks Community Trust coach Craig Monaghan spent the afternoon meeting residents at the home in November as part of the ‘Sharks Forces’ programme, which is run by the Sharks Community Trust.
Curtis, 21 and originally from Weston-Super-Mare, joined Sale Sharks from London Irish in 2016. The former England under-20 hooker has worked his way into the first team this season with 13 appearances so far including a season-debut try against Leicester.
“My father Matt was a serving Royal Marine, so hearing more about what life in the forces was like was amazing, and the stories were genuinely inspiring,” said Curtis.
“It was an honour to meet so many veterans late last year at one of our home games such as George a WWII Marine, which definitely inspired me to go visit Broughton House and to see the amazing work that the charity provides for military veterans.
“By becoming an ambassador, I hope to help raise the profile of the charity even more and offer my support wherever I can.”
The visit was organised by Craig Monaghan, an ex-soldier who is the lead project officer for the nationally-recognised Sharks Forces programme.
“The Sharks Community Trust hosted more than 200 veterans at a game in November last year and, shortly after, we had the opportunity to meet with some of the incredible veterans who are benefitting from the charity’s support,” said Craig.
“It was amazing for Curtis, AJ and I to hear the stories and heroics from many of the brave veterans and to find out more about the outstanding work taking place at the charity.
“It’s fantastic that this visit has resulted in Curtis deciding to become an Ambassador to help promote the work and care that takes place at Broughton House.”
In September 2017, Salford Council approved the plans for the £14 million redevelopment of Broughton House, with fundraising initiatives ongoing.
Broughton House is currently the only dedicated home for ex-servicemen and women in the North West. Once redevelopment finishes in 2020 it will include a 64-bedroom care home with a dementia wing and a separate 30 independent living apartments.
Broughton House chief executive Chris Lindsay said: “We are delighted that Curtis has agreed to become an ambassador of Broughton House.
“We’re extremely grateful for the time he and others at Sale Sharks have taken to meet our residents and take an interest in their stories and the re-development of Broughton House.
“As a local charity we rely heavily on the support of people in Greater Manchester and it’s fantastic to have Curtis on board as an ambassador for the home and the work we do.
“As a member of the local community and as a role model for the younger generation, the dedication shown to Broughton House by Curtis is inspirational. We look forward to working with him in the future.”