THE Llandeilo Branch of the Royal British Legion has reached its fundraising target to purchase two benches in memory of a local war hero.

A bench for Dryslwyn war hero David Tom Davies OBE is set to be installed in Penlan Park, Llandeilo with the second bench in his home village.

Mr Davies, known as DT, passed away at the age of 101 on April 7, 2020.

He served as a councillor for his local area of Dryswlyn, near Llandeilo, from 1970 to 2003, chairing the former Dyfed County Council from 1981-82, Carmarthenshire County Council from 1995-97, and on several education committees and boards.

He was also one of three founder members of the National Botanic Garden of Wales as well as Aberglasney Gardens, where he was a life member.

Before service to his community, Mr Davies served Queen and Country in WWII as a member of the Royal Artillery, and was captured as a prisoner of war at the Battle of Crete in 1941.

He spent three years as a prisoner in Austria, then Hungary and finally at the Zemun concentration camp, near Belgrade.

However, he managed to escape five times, eventually reaching Yugoslavia and joining the partisans before being invalided out to Italy and sent back to Britain where he was awarded a Military Medal.

A final donation of £158 from Llandeilo Co-op means the two benches can now be purchased and installed locally.

County councillor Edward Thomas, chairman of the Llandeilo RBL branch, said, “We initial thought we might raise £500 but the response has been overwhelming.

"Donations from £1 to £100 have been received, with the local town and community councils making donations recognising the achievements of DT in the community.

"A bench with a interpretation panel will be placed in Penlan Park and the other in DT’s home village of Dryslwyn.

"DT Davies was a war hero, a successful local businessman, county councillor for decades but to the Royal British legion, he was the chairman then the president who kept the branch together and in the Legion’s centenary it is important to recognise his contribution."