An Iraq veteran from Peebles who coaches ex-servicemen in archery has teamed up with two other former soldiers to launch a new campaign for a leading charity.
James Hamilton joined disabled ex-tank commander Mark Martin-Davey and ex-Royal Artillery man Mark White to race with bikes, archery bow and big collection buckets at the iconic Arthur’s Seat in the capital to kick off the Give a Little for Veterans campaign.
Run in association with the Royal British Legion Scotland, the campaign aims to raise funds for Scotland’s ex-servicemen and women and their families to help them lead fulfilling lives after the military.
Since coming to the Legion Scotland archery sessions as part of the charity’s comradeship programme, Hamilton has started doing the sport with his daughter Emily, 13.
The 33-year-old will be one of the first of a group of new volunteer coaches training at the archery events in Edinburgh. Most veterans coming to monthly sessions have disabilities, visual impairment or mental health conditions such as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
Hamilton has set his sights on the Paralympics, an international sports event for wounded, injured and sick servicemen and women. The father of two picked up a silver medal for the UK at an international archery competition this month and is now training to coach recovering servicemen in the sport.
Hamilton served 14 years in the Royal Logistics Corps. In January 2005 he was involved in an IED bomb blast in Iraq.
“Archery really helps me switch off and get my head straight, and it’s great meeting other veterans,” he said.
“I would urge people to support the Give a Little For Veterans campaign and help promote positive health and wellbeing for veterans.”
To find out more about Legion Scotland comradeship events, visit the Legion Scotland website www.legionscotland.org.uk