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Blind D-Day veteran Alfred Barlow gets medals from fellow serviceman

D-Day veteran Alfred Barlow (right), 96, who lost his medals at a motorway service station, is presented with replacements by fellow blind veteran Alan Walker Image copyright PA
Image caption Former soldier Alfred Barlow (right) was given replacements by fellow blind veteran Alan Walker

A blind D-Day veteran who lost his medals at a motorway service station has received replacements from a fellow visually-impaired former serviceman.

Alfred Barlow, 96, from Stockport, Greater Manchester, was returning from a trip to Normandy, France, on 8 June when he noticed they were missing.

Hearing that they could not be found, Alan Walker, from Hassocks, Sussex, bought replacements from a dealer.

He presented Mr Barlow with the medals at Hampton Court Palace Flower Show.

The 96-year-old's wife and grandson noticed the medals were missing when Mr Barlow returned from the toilet at Norton Canes Services, near Walsall on the M6 Toll.

Image copyright PA
Image caption Mr Barlow was joined by his wife Maisie for the ceremony at the Hampton Court Flower Show

His grandson retraced their steps and made inquiries in all the outlets, as well as at the lost property depot but they were nowhere to be found.

Crimestoppers has offered a £5,000 reward for information about the medals and the actor Hugh Grant also said he would pay anyone who helped return them £1,000.

Speaking at Hampton Court, Mr Barlow said he had "never expected all this fuss".

"I've got some replacements now. It's not quite the same, but nevertheless, I have got some medals that I have earned," he said.

The four missing medals

Image copyright Blind Veterans UK/PA
  • 1939-1945 Star
  • The France & Germany Star
  • 1939-1945 War Medal
  • The Palestine Medal

He added people had contacted him, offering their fathers' medals as a replacement "but I wouldn't want a son of mine giving my medals away just like that".

Mr Barlow served with 3rd Reconnaissance (Recce) Regiment, 3rd Division, during World War Two and later lost his sight through macular degeneration and glaucoma.

Anyone with information on the missing medals is asked to contact the Blind Veterans UK charity or Crimestoppers.

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