Numbers down, but future seen for Mosgiel Memorial RSA

The character of Mosgiel Memorial RSA might change, but despite declining numbers it is here to stay, board of trustees chairman Noel Graham says.

About 30 years ago the RSA had about 700 returned members and about 600 service members, he said.

That had dwindled to 143 returned members and 205 service members, but was bolstered by 833 associate members.

While returned members were once the ''backbone'' of the association, times had changed and the association had renamed itself the Mosgiel Memorial RSA and Social Club, he said.

He felt the service numbers could remain static, as those who served in conflicts such as Bosnia, Timor-Leste, Afghanistan and Iraq were expressing interest in the welfare the association could provide.

The once conservative organisation had also opened its doors to those from outside the military and services to sustain itself, he said.

''When the World War 2 guys came home, the World War 1 guys didn't want them in the place ... it was a conservative outfit like that,'' he said.

''That's changed ... but everything has bloody well changed. It's a fact of life that change goes on. I don't know what it [the future of the Mosgiel Memorial RSA] will look like, but I'm sure it will still be here.''

The RSA was ''in the throes of doing our premises up'', which he hoped might attract more members and he believed its future was ''be strong''.

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