A 96-year-old Fylde coast veteran has finally been recognised for his part in some of the Second World War’s most dangerous sea missions.
Former seaman Wilfred Robertson, from Ansdell, has been awarded the Arctic Star medal by the Government for his service during the Arctic convoys between 1941 and 1945.
Mr Robertson received his medal on Monday at St George’s nursing home, at Marine Drive, Ansdell, after his grandson Matthew had applied on his behalf.
The missions were undertaken during the war to provide vital supplies to the Soviet Union and sailed from Iceland, Liverpool and Scotland to northern Russian ports such as Murmansk and Archangel.
Mr Robertson’s daughter Estelle Drummond, 65, said the medal is well deserved.
Estelle, from Belmont Road, Ansdell, said: “He used to say how frightening it was on the convoys because if he’d have been hit that would have been it.
“We thought it was very important for him to get recognition of this.”
Almost 1,400 Allied merchant ships were used during the convoys, which were escorted by warships from the Royal Navy, Royal Canadian Navy and US Navy.
In total 85 of the Allies’ merchant ships were lost during the campaign, along with 16 warships.
Four Nazi warships and 30 U-Boat submarines were also sunk during the conflict.
The awarding of the Arctic Star for those who served in the convoys was first announced last year, and the medal formally began production after its approval by The Queen earlier this year.
To be eligible for the award, recipients must have undertaken operational service of any length north of the Arctic Circle during the Second World War.
Following Mr Robertson’s retirement from service, he moved from his home in Ellesmere Port, Cheshire, to Lytham, where he ran Robertson’s sweet shop, in Orchard Road, St Annes.
He later ran Fairhaven Fisheries before taking on a sweet shop in Woodlands Road, Ansdell.