Welcome to the Hayes (Kent) Branch of The Royal British Legion
THE HAYES BRANCH
A VERY SHORT HISTORY
The Hayes Branch of the Royal British legion was founded in 1933, and held its first meetings in the New Inn. Our premises at 14, Station Hill, were purchased in 1934; the five hundred pounds required for the purchase being loaned to the Branch by five local businessmen. The building, a semi-detached bungalow, was one of three built in the eighteen eighties for senior employees of the brewery which then stood in Bourne Vale, opposite Station Approach. The address at that time was 4, Hillside Lane. What is now the front of the building was, in those days, the back. The adjoining bungalow was acquired in 1987, allowing the Club to be extended, and to provide accomodation for the steward.
Whilst there is no record of when the Club, which is the social arm of the Branch, came into being, it was almost certainly sometime in 1934. The Club, which was smaller in those days than it is today, was frequented during the war by Canadian troops who manned the anti aircraft guns on Hayes Common. There was a field telephone link between the Club and the gun site.
Since then, the Royal British Legion at Hayes has continued to grow, and to improve the facilities available to members. Today there are around seven hundred and fifty - more than at any time in our history - ranging in age from late teens to mid nineties. The Branch raises a considerable sum each year for the Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal, money that continues to be needed as much today as ever in aid of ex service men and women.