DBF History

Summary Timeline

1982 The Douglas Bader Foundation was created and formed following the death on the 4th September of Group Captain Sir Douglas Bader, CBE, DSO, DFC, FRAeS, DL
1986 First Golf fundraising events held
1987 Establishment of the Bader Cup as an annual fundraising Golf Event held throughout the UK now involving over 600 golf clubs
1988 The Foundation became incorporated – Sir Peter Baxendell (Deputy Chairman of Shell) became Chairman of Fundraising
The Foundation moved to offices in the Shell Centre
1989 The first Bader Flame Award presented for Outstanding Contribution to the Amputee Disabled Community
1991 HRH Diana, Princess of Wales becomes Patron of the Foundation
1992 The Douglas Bader Centre built at Queen Mary’s University Hospital, Roehampton, LONDON
1993 The Douglas Bader Centre officially opened by Diana, Princess of Wales
1994 David Bickers elected Chairman of the Foundation
1996 First Bader Grants announced and presented at the Shell Centre
1998 BADERline – a new telephone helpline for amputees launched in the West of England
Bader Grants presented in honour of Diana, Princess of Wales
1999 Bader Grants presented by Queen Noor of Jordan at the Bader Centre, Roehampton
2000 First Bader Challenge fundraising event – Cycle Ride through Jordan involving able bodied and limb loss
2001 Sponsorship of First CHAMPS (Child amputee) week-end organised by BALASA
Ladies Salver Golf Tournament introduced
2002 Lady Bader receives OBE for her Charity Work
The Douglas Bader Foundation fund the National Help Bureau a joint initiative between the Douglas Bader Foundation and The Limbless Association
2003 First Prosthetic and Orthotic User and Professionals Industry Awards Ceremony in association with the Limbless Association
Opening of first overseas Bader Walking School within University Malaya Medical Centre, Kuala Lumpur
2004 Launch of the Limb Loss Legal Panel offering free legal advice to amputees in need
2005 Launch of first LIMB LOSS INFORMATION CENTRE for people with limb loss – www.limblossinformationcentre.com
First Farrow Bader Flying Day for children with disabilities
Launch of the inclusive Bader Challenges designed to encourage disabled people to participate in life changing challenges
2006 New Queen Mary’s Hospital rehabilitation facility called “The Douglas Bader Rehabilitation Centre” in memory of Sir Douglas Bader and the work of the Foundation
Launch of the Douglas Bader Insurance Advice Service
The Douglas Bader Grant Scheme pledges support to the amputee victims of the July 7th London Bombings
2007 25th Anniversary of the Douglas Bader Foundation
25th Anniversary Auction Dinner in The Long Room at Lord’s
2008 Inaugural Amputee Games
2009 2nd Amputee Games
Launch of Douglas Bader Foundation child-based initiative: BADER BRAVES
Douglas Bader Grant to RAFT
3rd Amputee Games
5 Bader Braves Young Aviators Days held around UK
3 Ambassadors – Phil Packer, David Gardner and Adam Layer – join DBF
LimbLine – New one-to-one advice service for LLIC
2011 9 Bader Braves Young Aviators Days held around UK
2 Ambassadors – Margaret Biggs and Wyn Jenkins – join DBF
2012 30th anniversary of the death of Sir Douglas Bader
12 Bader Braves Young Aviator Days scheduled
Grants to be awarded in honour of the 30th anniversary
2013 30th anniversary year of DBF
Bader Braves Challenge weekend at Calvert Trust, Exmoor
Nathan Doidge joins DBF Ambassadors
New LLIC Forum
Wyn Jenkins and Margaret Biggs launch Team Bader with bespoke cycling kit
1st DB Trophy Golf Challenge celbrates 30 years
John Southwick retires after 26 years of The Bader Cup
2014 More Bader Braves Aviator days and Adventure weekends added
Website upgraded
Introuducing BILL (Bader Info on Limb Loss) the successor to LLIC.


The first initiative was realised in 1993 – the completion of the Douglas Bader Centre, a facility built at Queen Mary’s Hospital, Roehampton, in West London to support rehabilitation services for amputees.

The Centre which, following changes at Queen Mary’s Hospital, is now called The Douglas Bader Rehabilitation Centre, provides a range of facilities and services for amputee members of the community, including a Walking School and Rehab Therapy Groups. Appropriately, this hospital had provided Douglas’s medical care as an amputee for some 50 years. The Centre was opened by the Foundation’s Patron, Diana, Princess of Wales, on February 25th 1993.


This initiative provides practical support for the pursuance of achievements by those with disabilities.

This initiative has assisted countless disabled individuals and groups throughout the UK to achieve a variety of goals in diverse areas ranging from education, the arts, sport and recreation to small businesses.

We look at all applications and, depending on the nature of the request, the scheme may help towards or provide the equipment, training, services, further education or other practical support required by the successful applicant.

The most recent recipient of a Douglas Bader Grant, RAFT, The Restoration of Appearance and Function Trust, received a grant to help towards their pioneering research in 2010.


2005 saw the creation of a central resource information website for amputees, their families and friends, carers and healthcare professionals.
To date the Limb Loss Information Centre has received many thousands of visitors from around the globe. During the 12-month period from November 2005 to November 2006 the site underwent a period of sustained growth averaging a monthly increase in page views of 6% and an increase in users of 5.7%. During this period a total of 135,000 page views were recorded from 22,000 users with each user visit lasting for an average of 6.3 page views.

The site received an additional 145 registered users bringing the total registered community to 2001. Interestingly there was a traffic spike in July 2006, which may well be contributed to the anniversary of the July 7th attacks.

Working closely with all charities, associations and organisations that assist and provide services or products to amputees, we aim to join up the support and information services currently offered to best pool resources and serve amputees in the most efficient and purposeful way.


2010 saw the launch of this exciting new initiative by the Douglas Bader Foundation. BADER BRAVES was created as a joint acknowledgement of Sir Douglas Bader’s Honourary Chieftainship of a Canadian Indian Tribe and the bravery of children with limb deficiencies and other disabilities in their efforts to lead normal lives.

It is a tremendous honour, limited to just 40 living people, to be awarded a Chieftainship and one of which Sir Douglas was extremely and justifiably proud.

To date there are very few initiatives aimed specifically at helping children with limb deficiency and other disabilities and their families.

The BADER BRAVES was founded with Douglas Bader’s indomitable spirit and the courage of the Kainai Indians in mind and the Young Aviators Days and the Events we offer are intended to be inspirational and encouraging in nature.

  • BADER BRAVES will support children with limb loss and other physical disabilities by offering unique experiences and improving life-skills to increase confidence. The Douglas Bader Foundation has always acknowledged the importance of the children’s families and carers and, in supporting the children, also aims to benefit those people involved in their lives.
  • BADER BRAVES will incorporate The Douglas Bader Foundation’s already proven Bader Flying/Young Aviators Days providing youngsters from 6-16 with limb deficiency and other disabilities with the opportunity of experiencing flight in a light aircraft.





We have several exciting events in the pipeline to mark this auspicious year for the charity. It is difficult for charities, especially small charities like the DBF, to keep going. There is huge competition especially from the big, funded charities and these uncertain economic times make it even more of a challenge. It is a huge achievement to have survived for 30 years, we are proud to be celebrating this landmark anniversary and very grateful to all our friends and supporters without whom it wouldn’t be possible.

  • BADER BRAVES – Our most comprehensive BADER BRAVES Young Aviators Day Programme yet. We followed the fantastic success of our Winter Wonderland Weekend with the Calvert Trust at Kielder, with an equally successful weekend event at Calvert Trust, Exmoor in February. More will follow!
  • BADER GRANTS – The Bader Grants initiative will be providing grants to help amputees or other disabled to achieve their individual goals. These inspirational Grants will be awarded in the spirit of Douglas Bader as a fitting 30th Anniversary tribute to the positive and determined attitude he showed during his lifetime.
  • TEAM BADER CYCLING – 2012 saw the creation of this new venture and this was launched in February 2013 by the successful completion of TANDEM CHALLENGE WALES undertaken by TEAM BADER Cycling Founders, Wyn Jenkins and Margaret Biggs and friends and supporters. Under the auspices of 2 of our Ambassadors, Wyn Jenkins and Margaret Biggs, who are cycling enthusiasts, TEAM BADER will welcome cyclists of all abilities to represent and raise funds for the DBF. As a bonus, cyclists will get to wear the brand new, bespoke and very stylish kit designed by Margaret Biggs and increase awareness of the charity in the process. TEAM BADER will be taking part in several cycling events and challenges in 2013 in support of the charity. Please keep checking the Website for details and contact us if you’d like to join in. You’ll be made very welcome whatever your standard.
  • AMBASSADORS – We are delighted to welcome Nathan Doidge to our team of Ambassadors.
  • EVENTS & FUND-RAISING – There are various Events and Fundraisers, both group and individual completed and in the pipeline. Please keep checking in for details and please join us if you can. If you’d like to organise a fund-raising event yourself, we’re always happy to help and advise.
  • FACEBOOK & TWITTER – You can now become a friend of the DBF and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.


  • JOHN SOUTHWICK & THE BADER CUP: We were very sad to lose John Southwick who initiated Bader Golf and then ran The Bader Cup, which became known as the biggest mixed tournament, for 26 years, raising considerable funds for the DBF in the process. We are grateful beyond words to John for his loyalty and support over so many years and will miss both him and the tournament. We wish him an enjoyable and well-earned retirement.
  • NEW AMBASSADOR: We were delighted and honoured when Martine Wright agreed to accept our invitation to join the DBF as an Ambassador last year. We have no doubt that Martine will be a huge inspiration to fellow amputees and able-bodied alike and look forward to working with her.
  • BADER BRAVES EVENTS: We have a new Young Aviators Day Programme with 9 exciting venues confirmed. We are also offering an Adventure Weekend at the wonderful Calvert Trust in Kielder and will be adding new activities and challenges for our Braves to enjoy.
  • WEBSITE/S: The DBF Website has been revamped and become responsive meaning that it can be read more easily on hand-held devices. LLIC has come back under the DBF auspices and been rebranded as BADER INFO on LIMB LOSS. So – here’s BILL! If you have any questions on Limb Loss…ask BILL. We are extremely grateful to our friends at Coreware for their support which made these Website upgrades possible.

As always, please keep checking the pages to be kept up to date with progress.