HILLINGDON Council have become the first organisation to be inducted into the Normandy Veterans Association.
In an unprecedented move and a UK first, the west Middlesex branch of the NVA made the announcement, to thank Hillingdon for their recent support.
Councillor Ray Puddifoot, Leader of the council, and the Mayor of Hillingdon Shirley Harper O'Neill, were both presented with plaques at the organisation's annual remembrance day meeting on Sunday.
Myer Malin, chairman of the branch, said: "We Normandy Veterans have received tremendous support and encouragement from both the council and Hillingdon residents.
"The borough has taken ageing veterans and modern young counterparts to its heart.
"We would like to thank Hillingdon for their ongoing support. The Mayor and the Leader of Council have told us the borough is honoured. I have to tell you it is we who were citizen-soldiers, sailors and airmen that are honoured."
Councillor Puddifoot said: "The grant of Associate Membership to the London Borough of Hillingdon represents a unique and mutually beneficial honour.
"I hope that other local authorities follow Hillingdon's lead in order to help perpetuate the anniversaries of D-Day landings and to commemorate those who lost their lives."
The move, thought to be the first time that the NVA have awarded Associate Membership to an entire organisation, highlights the continued support that Hillingdon Council has given to war veterans.
This has included stepping in to offer to pay for veterans to go to Normandy earlier this year when Government funding was withdrawn and the council's hugely successful Civic Pride initiative which has seen all of the council's war memorials refurbished and record numbers of supporters at a recent RAF welcome home parade, believed to be one of the largest of its kind in the UK in recent years and attended by around 30,000 people.
The presentation took place at the Fox and Pheasant, in Stoke Poges, Buckinghamshire.