The Poppy Appeal 2018 launched on Saturday as The Royal British Legion marks the end of the First World War Centenary by saying ‘Thank You’ to the generation who served, sacrificed and changed our world. This year the Legion is leading a movement to recognise the contribution of the entire First World War generation including those who served, the Commonwealth, women, children, pioneers and artists.
Joining the movement and encouraging locals to say their own ‘Thank You’ The Mayor of the City of Derby, Councillor Mike Carr and the Mayoress Cilla Carr. They both met and talked to volunteers getting ready for the first street collection of the appeal, and also those selling knitted poppies in the intu centre. Special thanks to the families of Daniel Blinco and Russell Aston for sharing the morning with us. Both these young men fought in recent conflicts and sadly made the ultimate sacrifice.
A knitted display of 7,000 hand knitted poppies was unveiled, hanging from the ceiling by the Eagle Market. Each of these poppies were made by individuals across Derbyshire coming together to say thank you to the WW1 generation that shaped the world we live in today. Each poppy represents a man that fell during WW1 from Derby City centre. Vivienne Toon wanted to do something special in memory of her late father Frank Green who was a Grenadier Guard in WW1. Vivienne knitted 7,000 poppies all by herself initially at the beginning of the year which she has since sold to raise money for the Poppy Appeal. As she attended events over the summer she inspired other to join her Pop Up Poppies movement and another 7,000 poppies popped out of know where. The project then took on a life of its own and to date Vivienne has inspired the creation of over £55,000 knitted poppies.
“The Royal British Legion and volunteers from across Derbyshire have done a fantastic job of creating the knitted poppies to help us all remember the many lives lost locally during the First World War. We are delighted to be able to display this at intu Derby and to offer our support to the Poppy Appeal.” Adam Tamsett, General Manager intu Derby
Community Fundraiser Lilly Clements said: “Everyone has a connection to the First World War, and we all have a reason to say ‘Thank You’ for the legacy that extraordinary generation left for us.
“The First World War left countless legacies that positively impact our lives today, from ground breaking social change and timeless works of art to pioneering innovations. As we come to the end of the First World War Centenary now is the time to come together in our communities and say ‘Thank You.’
“This Poppy Appeal wear your poppy with pride to support the Armed Forces community past and present. Every donation received will make a real difference to the lives of Service men and women, veterans and their loved ones.”
The fundraising target in Derbyshire is £1 million this year, which will go towards the Legion’s biggest ever national target of £50 million to continue its vital work delivering practical, through life care and support to the Armed Forces community.
The Legion uses donations in many ways including providing crisis grants, researching the long lasting impact of blast injuries on the body, lobbying the government on issues that affect our community, sport and art based recovery programmes and advising on benefits and money issues