World War II veteran makes virtual return to scene of battle

A Chelsea Pensioner has used virtual reality to revisit the French town he helped to liberate in World War Two.

Frank Mouque was a corporal with the Royal Engineers when they liberated the town of Armentieres from Nazi occupation.

Mr Mouque was shown a virtual reality experience ahead of Remembrance Sunday that enabled him to see and hear from residents of the town.

Chelsea Pensioner Frank Mouque revisited a French town he helped to liberate in WWII using VR. Credit: PA

The 91-year-old was also presented with an official medal by the town's mayor via the virtual reality headset.

"It's ingenious. It's like you're really there, standing in front of them," Mr Mouque said.

"On behalf of all the people who were (serving) with me, thank you."

During the film residents of the town thanked him for his part in the liberation and local school children sang a nursery rhyme for him.

The 360-degree film was created by Manchester-based start-up Twine.

Company chief executive Stuart Logan said: "Virtual reality is a technology with almost limitless potential, but we wanted to look beyond thrills and entertainment and use it to achieve something truly profound.

"It was wonderful to let Frank experience the gratitude of the people of Armentieres and see first-hand the enduring legacy of both his service and the sacrifices of so many friends."

Frank being presented in virtual reality with an official medal by the town's mayor. Credit: Twine/YouTube

Colonel Simon Bate OBE, adjutant of the Royal Hospital Chelsea said: "This is a tremendously important time of year.

"Remembrance is a chance for us all to remember how lucky we are to be here today and what we owe to our veterans.

"For Frank, to be thanked by the people of Armentieres for his contribution during the war, and to receive this medal from the mayor, means a tremendous amount."