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3rd Dec, 2021

Redditch Legion makes an urgent appeal for new members

REDDITCH Royal British Legion has put out an urgent appeal for new recruits.

The local branch, which raised a record £30,000 from last year’s poppy appeal, is suffering as its membership ages.

Now it’s desperate for new blood in the ranks – and those who step forward don’t even need to have served in the armed forces to join in.

“It’s an important time – we’re at the 100th anniversary of the Battle of Passchendaele and next year is the centenary of the end of the First World War and the Armistice,” said acting vice chair Barry Tansey, who served in the Parachute Regiment.

He added that the benefits of joining the Legion went beyond poppy day – there’s a lively social side and anyone who joins the committee will be directly involved in an organisation that helps thousands of ex-servicemen and women.

“You don’t join the Legion for the glory but to recognise the men and women who have given so much for this country in all the conflicts we’ve been in, like Bosnia, Iraq and Afghanistan today.

“I remember back in 1961 we were in the Gulf guarding the oil fields and every time you went out on patrol you feared for your life. That’s something that hasn’t changed for the soldiers of today.”

“There’s such a strong well of support for the Legion in Redditch, in fact we know we only scratch the surface,” said Barry.

“However our numbers are so reduced it’s hard to get out and reach everyone. With the poppy appeal we had just half a dozen helping plus a few volunteers.

“If a shop or a business wants to do a poppy collection please get in touch and we’ll get a tin and some poppies out to you.

“Better still, join us.”

The Redditch branch of the RBL has a lively Facebook page and people can get in touch that way or at its forming coming annual general meeting on September 25.

That takes place at 7.30pm at the headquarters of the 37th Signal Regiment, Kohima House, off Winyates Way, Redditch, B98 9PJ and anyone interested in joining is welcome to drop in and find out more.

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