Dame Vera’s charity moves as 100th birthday nears

A charity founded by the “Forces’ Sweetheart” Dame Vera Lynn has moved as it plans to help more children with cerebral palsy and their families.

Dame Vera Lynn Children’s Charity has been supporting families and children aged under five with cerebral palsy and other motor learning difficulties since 2001, and it has now moved after many years at Billingshurst to a new home as it celebrates the veteran entertainer’s centenary year.

The charity confirmed last week that it has now moved to its new home, called the Dame Vera Lynn Children’s Centre, in  Holmsted  Farm, Staplefield Road, near Cuckfield.

It says it wants wants to become more accessible to a wider geographic area of families, where it will provide support and help alongside running early intervention sessions and other support services.

Dame Vera, President of the charity, will be celebrating her 100th birthday in March. She said: “Establishing the charity was one of my proudest moments and I am now so pleased to see it grow to help more children and their parents. The new centre will be a wonderful haven of fun, activity and learning.” 

The charity, which supports children and their families from across the South East, uses conductive education at their core of its service, a pioneering holistic approach to physiotherapy, teaching and learning that aims to give children better control over their movements and posture. 

Pilar Cloud, executive manager of the charity, said: “We are establishing a facility that will act as a beacon of support and reassurance to our families. Previously, we were only providing one session a week. By moving to this new base, we can push forward and expand what we’re doing.

“We are on hand to help any parent that may have questions or concerns about their child’s development. Children and their families are at the fore of everything we do, and we are here to show everything they can achieve.

“All our new services will be shaped by the families we currently work with, and those we look forward to supporting in future.”

The centre will offer Monday and Friday sessions from February 13  from 10am – 1pm, with outreach services available by appointment.

For more information about the charity’s services, volunteering opportunities or fundraising events call 01403 780444, email or visit

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