Members march for Legion’s 90th

The Royal British Legion 90th anniversary march from Wellingborough to Higham Ferrers yesterday
The Royal British Legion 90th anniversary march from Wellingborough to Higham Ferrers yesterday

Royal British Legion members took to the streets of Wellingborough to play their part in 90 miles of marching for the 90th anniversary of the organisation.

The march yesterday was one of three in the north of the county, which saw members walk around 10 miles from The Embankment to Higham Ferrers.

Today their Legion colleagues will be marching from Collyweston to Oundle, and tomorrow a further group will be marching from Weldon to Kettering.

To round off the anniversary celebrations, a concert featuring Faryl Smith will be held in Kettering later in the month.

Legion members taking part in the walk said it was as important as ever to promote its work.

Ann Kadiri, welfare chairman of the Rushden branch, said: “We just come out to support the work of the Legion. We are the ground troops, as I would put it.

“It is as important now as it was in 1921. The Legion spends £1.25m a week on welfare and to keep this funding up is what these days are all about.

“You see on the television and in the newspapers about the people who give the ultimate sacrifice. But what do we give up?

“The branch needs more members in the 40 to 50 age group. We are the 70, 80 and 90-year-olds who have given years of support and we need the younger ones coming in.

“Some members of the public think you have to be from a military background, but that is a fallacy.”

Regional fundraiser Giles Coleman said: “We have a couple of concerts coming up but we wanted to do something a bit more active.

“We want to do 90 miles for 90 years. We are a 365 days a year charity rather than just at poppy time.”

Finedon and Irthlingborough branch member Michael Shipton said: “It is very important and one way of putting the name of the Legion forward, because a lot of people don’t know about the work we do.

“We can provide pretty much anything from an electric kettle to a fridge freezer or completely furnishing a home.

“We also have seven residential homes for long-term care, and four welfare break homes which can be used for bereavement breaks.”

The fundraising concert is being held at Kettering Parish Church at 7pm on Friday, June 17, and tickets are £7.

To book call Mr Coleman on 07825 450213.