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Sunday, 13 July 2014

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Carlisle poppy appeal set to match record

Poppy appeal organisers in Carlisle say they are set to top their record for raising money with nearly £85,000 collected.

Colin Wadsworth photo
Colin Wadsworth

Colin and Margaret Wadsworth, who organise the Carlisle and Stanwix branch of the Royal British Legion, have thanked everyone who supported the November appeal and said they had raised £83,915.13 – on course to match the £85,000 total collected in 2011.

“There are so many people involved, the volunteers from Rotary Clubs Carlisle and Carlisle South who deliver tins and trays, the stores who allow us to collect on their premises and the people who sit in the stores,” said Mrs Wadsworth.

“Most importantly, all the very generous people of Carlisle and surrounding areas who bought poppies and supported us. Those in rural areas who carry out house to house collections for us.”

She did not want to single out individuals, she said, but thanked mayor Ray Bloxham and his wife Olive, and Jodie Vasquez – the “Poppy Princess” – who accompanied the mayor on many visits.

Jodie, 19, a former Trinity School pupil, has Ehlers Danlos Syndrome (EDS) which has led to multi-organ failure

Despite this, she takes part in as much money raising as she can and was named runner up in the ITV Local Heroes competition nationally after winning the ITV Border title. Jodie has raised thousands of pounds for the Sick Children’s Trust.

Jodie, from Currock, said it was the fourth year she got involved with the poppy appeal.

“My dad was in the Royal Engineers for 10 years and the Legion have given us a lot of help so this is my way of saying thank-you,” she said.

Mrs Wadsworth also praised pupils from Trinity School and Cumbria Dance who performed a flash mob to launch the appeal in Carlisle.

“The money raised is spent on the welfare of serving and ex-service personnel and their families,” she said. “The Legion provides adaptations to homes and mobility aids for those injured, financial advice, re-training, support for those with post traumatic stress, and a wide range of other welfare work.”

She said the need for help was ‘always growing’ and collections take part throughout the year.

“Everyone was frightened last year because of the recession but we noticed a lot more notes and £1 coins going into the collection tins this time,” she said.

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