BBC1 aired the first of two compelling viewing DIY SOS specials last night, where Nick Knowles, his team and hundreds of volunteers rebuilt a derelict street in Manchester – all to benefit war veterans.
I challenge anyone not to watch and the have to feign something got in their eye… actually it was a real tear jerker for me, seeing our wonderful war veterans be on the receiving end of a treat.
The programme saw British heroes receiving help from people they had never met before to help them re-adjust to life outside of the armed forces.
Given what Kirintec manufactures and the world I now find myself in, it really did resonate with me; offering a real insight into deserving people’s troubled lives and a story of how their courage was not being ignored as a whole street was being made-over – including a support centre and a retraining home too.
36 years young, military veteran John Borge suffered from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder or PTSD as it is often referred too.
In the programme he said: “I’ve seen children been hit by an IED. Nothing prepares you for it.” I sat gripped and saddened about how his experience has impacted on his life – even the sound of drunks walking past his house at night disturbed him, John’s marriage had ended (due to his mental frailty) and this was a chance for a new beginning for John and his cute son.
Fellow street resident in waiting was Jack who was shot by the Taliban, while serving in Afghanistan. This meant he has a brain injury. The show, its fleet of volunteers and the deserving residents were even greeted by royal visitors.
The Duke of Cambridge Prince William and Prince Harry rolled up their sleeves and helped out too as they surprised crowds with their visit.
Donning their builders hard hats with an unassuming ‘Harry’ and ‘William’ written on them in pen, they led by example lifting slabs and painting – and even gave a morale boost with their cheeky humour… a proper laugh out loud moment.
The second and final episode of DIY SOS’s veterans’ village airs next Tuesday (20/10) at 8pm on BBC One – I’ll be watching with a tissue in hand (just in case of course I get something in my eye again!)