Spalding’s 2014 Poppy Appeal has plunged into crisis and may lose thousands of pounds with no one to deliver boxes of poppies and collecting cans to shops and businesses.
Peter Lyon, honorary Poppy Appeal organiser for Spalding branch of The Royal British Legion, is looking for local heroes to come to the rescue as the nation marks the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of the First World War.
Without volunteers, the RBL could lose nearly a third of the total normally collected in the Spalding district, which includes Spalding Common, Cowbit, Pode Hole, Weston, and Springfields.
Mr Lyon said: “We need to get the boxes delivered because they have helped us raise £7,300 towards our total of £24,022 so far in our financial year, which ends on September 30.
“We can’t afford to lose that amount and we really need some help.
“With a population of some 29,000, surely there are 20 or 30 people who can assist in this the 100th anniversary of the start of the First World War?”
Mr Lyon said the appeal needs a minimum of four cars with drivers – accompanied by one or two assistants – to deliver the boxes and cans to the shops and businesses or static collection points.
He said: “Teams must be available to operate during working hours in order to complete delivery to shops during their opening hours.”
Mr Lyon described the current situation facing Spalding’s Poppy Appeal as “the most serious crisis for five years”.
In 2009, when poppy box deliveries were first in crisis, Bakkavor leapt to the rescue and supplied delivery teams but they are no longer available, Mr Lyon says, due to “redundancy, retirement and redeployment”.
Mr Lyon is also appealing for collectors to come forward who can spare an hour or two to help out with collections at Sainsbury’s, Springfields and Baytree Garden Centre.
n To offer your help towards the Poppy Appeal, please call Mr Lyon on 01406 373669.