AN RAF veteran who witnessed German bombers flying over his home has won a national award.

Peter McGraghan, 82, who lives in Darlington, has volunteered for the Royal Air Forces Association, the charity that supports the RAF family, for more than 16 years.

As a child, he witnessed German bombers flying over his South Shields home during the Second World War and the RAF fighter planes flying out to engage them. He also served for five years in the RAF Postal Service as a young man.

He said: “I still feel part of the RAF family, and this is why I like being a welfare caseworker – it’s my opportunity to give something back. I have met some wonderful people who I would not have met if I had just retired.

“As a caseworker, I find the people who have served in the RAF are loathe to ask for help and it is my job to make it easier for them to ask.”

The RAF Association’s Darlington Branch stalwart received the award from the RAF Benevolent Fund at its annual awards ceremony in June.

Karen Lehair, the RAF Association’s Area Welfare Manager for the North East, nominated Peter for the award.