One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
(in the UK) a resident of the Royal Hospital Chelsea for old or disabled soldiers.
- ‘Residents of Arnhem welcome back the veterans, led by Chelsea pensioners, who fought Germans at their bridge 60 years ago’
- ‘We're not talking about a harmless Chelsea pensioner here.’
- ‘A Chelsea pensioner, right, leaves after casting his vote at a polling station in west London, yesterday.’
- ‘The Chelsea pensioners have just been marched in.’
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