Worksop: 93-year-old awarded Légion d’honneur for part in liberation of France during Second World War

Tributes have been paid to a 93-year-old Worksop war veteran who has been awarded the Legion d’honneur from the French President.

By Sophie Wills
Tuesday, 10th November 2015, 3:35 pm
Ken Beard with MP John Mann
Ken Beard with MP John Mann

Kenneth Beard, who is now a Knight of the French Ordre national de la Légion d’honneur, was awarded the accolade due to his role in liberating France from German occupation in the Second World War.

MP for Bassetlaw John Mann visited the veteran, of Farndale, to congratulate him on his award on Friday, October 30.

He said: “Ken fought during World War Two to liberate France and selflessly put his life on the line in order to free a nation under occupation.

Ken Beard

“But he but also fought to protect and defend our freedoms at home in Britain. Those awarded this medal are incredibly brave and thoroughly deserve our respect.

“We are all incredibly proud of Ken and indeed all those veterans who have fought for their country, past and present.”

Ken is the second veteran in Worksop to make the Légion after 91-year-old Robert Parnell also received the accolade at the beginning of October for risking his life in the D-day landings.

Ken, who served in the RAF, said: “I am very proud to win the award. Being in the RAF was obviously a very dangerous occupation but it is something that still fascinates me to this day.

“I don’t fly anymore but I have friends that take me out in the aircraft and I have also lectured on flying at different airfields.”

An event is being organised at Retford Town Hall on 20th November by the Royal British Legion and the French Embassy, where Retford veteran Geoff Lister will join Mr Beard in being officially presented with their medals by the French Consul.