Worksop branch of Royal British Legion appeals for poppy selling volunteers

The Worksop branch of the Royal British Legion is appealing for volunteers to help with this year’s Poppy Appeal.

Tuesday, 19th October 2021, 7:00 am

After being forced to cancel fundraising events for the past 18 months due to lockdown restrictions, this year the Poppy Appeal is more important than ever for the charity that classes it as its biggest fundraiser of the year.

Worksop branch secretary and Poppy Appeal organiser, Grant Cullen, said: “Once again we will be having a presence in each of the town’s main supermarkets which we hope, if sufficient volunteers are forthcoming, to have the tables manned and a variety of Poppy Appeal merchandise available.

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"Items like pin badges with the current year date are very much sought after as folks collect them year after year.

"In previous years one of our local churches manned a table in one of the supermarkets but couldn’t last year because most of their volunteers are in the vulnerable category.

"I am waiting on their call to see if they can come this year, they really are stars.

“We really want to get back to pre 2020 levels of support and to this end we need more volunteers to come forward to help us, as many of those who have done in previous years cannot now do so due to age, infirmity or being in one of the vulnerable groups.”

The funds raised by the Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal support veterans and their families.

Mr Cullen said the pandemic had greatly impacted a number of the fundraising activities the RBL were able to perform.

He added: “Last year it was almost a last minute thing that we would make any local collections at all, activities like street collections by the various cadet forces couldn’t take place and many of our regular supporters who man the tables in, for example, the supermarkets were advised against doing this on account of age or infirmity.

"We usually distribute collecting cans and the blue poppy boxes throughout many local businesses but due to the shortness of notice it was not possible to get around them all.

"Then on November 4 lockdown restrictions were tightened, indeed it was well into this year before we could recover many of the collecting cans and boxes and, not unexpectedly, the sums raised were well down on previous years.

"The local supermarkets allowed unmanned tables on their premises and did a sterling job keeping an eye on the collecting cans.

"Footfall in the supermarkets was, not unexpectedly, down with many folks opting for click and collect or home deliveries.”

This year the charity will also be offering contactless terminals so that donations can be made in supermarkets for those who prefer to pay on card.

Those who are able to help can contact Mr Cullen on 07824628638 or [email protected]