Generous people from across the area have given their time and their money to the Poppy Appeal once again.
The Stamford and District branch of the Royal British Legion hosted a Poppy Party at the Borderville Sports Centre in the run-up to Christmas to thank all its most valued supporters, who helped ensure the total raised from the 2016 appeal was more than £47,000.
The Stamford branch ran the appeal for two weeks from October 31 to November 12. Three Stamford supermarkets had Poppy stalls and boxes were put in shops, businesses, school, pubs and clubs.
Once the monies had been counted £42,243.12 had been raised and Peterborough 5x5 Cycle Challenge Club had also been fundraising during the year and presented a cheque for £5,019, making the total for Stamford District of £47,262.58 .
Morrisons in Uffington Road collected nearly £11,000 with Waitrose in West Street and Sainsbury’s in Ryhall Road each adding nearly £8,000 to the tally.
The branch hosted a marquee in Stamford High Street on Friday and Saturday, November 11 and 12, and members were joined by Military Working Dogs and Handlers from 1 Regiment, St George’s Barracks, North Luffenham. With the help of Stamford Army Cadets and Stamford Air Training Cadets collections on the two days raised £2,324. Pubs, clubs and schools brought in £4,000, while businesses brought in £1,628. Sales of poppies in shops saw a further £3,208 raised, while Keith Langley from Ideal Shopping Direct added in £500.
Guests at the celebratory Poppy Party included the mayor John Dawson and Brigadier Celia Harvey, who presented awards to the volunteers.
Branch chairman Ray Beresford started the proceedings with the Act of Remembrance.
Terry Murphy from the Peterborough 5x5 Cycle Club was also there to hand over his cheque for which he was thanked.
Five year thank you certificates were given to Derek Adkins, the Rev Eileen Bangay, Jim Snelling, Beryl Ingham, John Ingham, Jim Jackson, Michele Jenkinson and Pauline Lodge.
Receiving 15 year awards were Roy Lemmon, Commander Graham Creedy and Kevin Gallagher.
Marian Freeman and Steve Bonde each received 20 year awards, while Frank Magee, Pat Magee and Val Young were given 25 years awards.
President of the Stamford branch Steve Bonde designed certificates that were handed out by mayor Coun Dawson in appreciation to those who had raised over £100. A total of 39 certificates were printed. There was a special thank you to Laura Blowers who raised £1,750 and Sue Futter who collected nearly £600 by making and selling knitted poppies, 900 of these were put on a stall in Sainsbury’s.
The party also included a raffle with proceeds of course going to the appeal. Graham Cook donated one of his paintings, which was given as first prize.
Poppy Appeal organiser Jim Jackson closed the evening by giving his thanks to his committee, Jim Rimmington, Peter Wharam, Clive and June Green, Jane Pape and Alan Patrick.
Thanks were given, to all who volunteered at Waitrose especially to Paul Beard (20 hours), to Steve Bonde and Edith Elliott for giving 20 hours and thanks to store manager Kevin Whiston.
Jim also thanked Alan Patrick for organising the Morrisons collection and the volunteers there, especially Clive and June Green who did an amazing 38 hours, and manager Joe Danby and staff Jason Hardstaff and Shelley and Jeanette in the cash office.
Peter Wharam was thanked for running the Sainsbury’s collection, as well as volunteer Sylvia Rawlings who did 30 hours, store manager Darren Hamilton and colleague Alex.
He also gave thanks to Ray Beresford and Pat Thompson, Brian McArd, Shaun Arthur, John Ingham , Jonno Greenwood, 2071 Squadron Air Training Cadets and 2 Squadron Army Cadets who helped in the High Street.
To Jane and Adrian Pape, Clive and June Green, Jim Rimmington for the distribution and collection of boxes in and around Stamford, also to Jim for doing the wreaths. To those who counted the cash - Maria Jackson, Ann Rawden, Jim and Pauline Rimmington, Peter Wharam, to Emma Oglesbee and to all staff at Lloyds Bank.
Service personnel from RAF Wittering and St George’s Barracks in North Luffenham also helped at collections. Jim thanked RAF Wittering Station Commander Group Captain Richard Pratley and his team - Cpl Paul Stewart, SAC Alex Patterson and Sgt Neil Taylor, Sgt Chris Dupee and SAC Chloe Frank.
Thanks also went to Lt Col Steve Lumley, Commanding Officer, and Staff Sgt Andy Lang of 20 Works Group. Royal Engineers.
Thanks also to Lt Col Steve Forman RLC for allowing the Military Working Dogs, and Sgt Rob Gould RAVC and the handlers and dogs of 1 Regiment Military Working Dogs to support the appeal.
Final thanks were given to Grace and Brian Marsden for supplying the buffet, Roy Prentice, Marian Freeman and to Beryl and John Ingham for the raffle and to all at Borderville Sports Centre.
Jim added: “Finally my very grateful thanks to all the people of Stamford and district who gave so generously again this year and last year’s Poppy Appeal total will be exceeded by over £1,000.”
l The Uppingham appeal raised nearly £7,000 and the Oakham appeal raised £19,000.