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New Malden poppy appeal saved after Surrey Comet appeal for help
A married couple have come forward to head up this year's Malden and Coombe poppy appeal after the Surrey Comet revealed it was in danger of being scrapped.
New Malden couple Tina Corr, 55, and her bank worker husband Stephen, 60, have stepped in to take over the sinking poppy appeal following the Royal British Legion’s call for help.
The former organiser of the appeal had been forced to step down due to illness but there was little hope for a replacement to take on the heavy workload.
But Mrs Corr, a university administrator, who lives in Bodley Road, said: “We have been helping with the appeal for 15 years. We did not realise the lady running it was stepping down until we saw it in the paper.
“My husband has been in the Territorial Army. We have always supported the army.”
The mother-of-two said she was spurred into action after she heard the appeal may not be back this year after making £35,000 last year to support serving and ex serving men and women.
She said: “We are not going to do anything different but it is going to be a learning curve for us.
"We are hoping to match last year – that would be a great achievement for us.
"We just want to do as well as the previous organiser has done.
"It is a lot of work - in the two weeks it is quite laborious but I am sure between the two of us we can do it.”
Councillor Ken Smith, chairman of the Malden and Coombe Royal British Legion branch, said: "I am very pleased that someone has taken on this task.
"It does involve quite a lot of administrative work during the course of the 64 weeks that we are collecting.
"It’s not easy to get people to stand outside in the cold holding a tin.
"We are really happy they have come on board to help and the existing poppy appeal will have support.”
In 2011 the Surrey Comet were involved in a campaign headed by a small army of ex-servicemen to restore a vandalised war memorial before Remembrance Sunday, which led to an 11th-hour victory.
Anyone who would like to help with the appeal can email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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