As a veteran this blog is close to my heart. Today I spent a little time at my local Sainsbury’s store, Marus Bridge, Wigan to help with this years Poppy Appeal. My Dad, Mark, has been volunteering his time for the last couple of years to help Bob (who is a veteran of the British Army) manage his stall which he has covered for around 20 years. The lovely story of how they met goes something like this…
In 2013 my Mum and Dad popped to their local Sainsbury’s with their Newfoundland Monty. I should mention at this point that Monty is somewhat of a celeb in the dog world. He has a facebook page, twitter account and was asked to blog Crufts this year!! My Mum went in to the store and my Dad and Bob the veteran started chatting in the foyer whilst he waited. As they did lots of people came over to give Monty a cuddle and in doing so bought a poppy. When my Mum returned and Mark went to say bye Bob joked that it would be great if Mark and Monty could come back sometime as he’d never been so busy!! So my Dad did. He went back a few times after that as well and that year Bob, Mark and Monty raised over £7000 for the Poppy Appeal – a new record for Bob. The year after my Dad went back with Monty for the full two weeks and they raised over £9000. This year Bob, who is now in his 80’s has asked my Dad to look after the stall as he wanted to retire from his volunteer work. My Dad gladly agreed and this year it has become a family affair!! My Nan and wife (and me!!) knit poppies, my Mum makes beautiful cards to sell and my sisters help at the stall. Monty is now also joined by Cookie, my parent’s second Newfoundland.
This year we tweeted some local celebs to see if they might pop down and help us raise awareness for such a great cause. Athlete Jenny Meadows replied at once and it was great to meet her today.
Jenny is an Olympic Athlete best known for competing in the 800m. She will be participating again at Rio in 2016.
We really appreciate Jenny taking the time to pop down and help us raise awareness. Follow Jenny on Twitter @jennymeadows800 and follow Monty on twitter @montydogge.
Keep an eye out for the gang in the local newspapers, thanks.