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Record 2020 for Montrose poppy appeal despite pandemic

Montrose Poppy Scotland team member Sadie Gillespie at the launch of the 2021 Poppy Pledge.
Montrose Poppy Scotland team member Sadie Gillespie at the launch of the 2021 Poppy Pledge.

Montrose Poppy Appeal organisers have registered a record 2020 in an “amazing” show of local generosity during the pandemic.

Despite the challenges of the pandemic, volunteers were thrilled to raise £15,509 in their most successful year to date.

Appeal spokesperson Ally Hutchison said: “With a population in Montrose of 12,100 that is an amazing achievement.”

The result has buoyed the town team for 2021 after it became the first in Scotland to sign up for the 2021 Poppy Pledge, commemorating the centenary of the first cloth poppies being created to remember the fallen of World War One.

Mr Hutchison added: “We have pledged to raise £1,921 before November 2021 and will run an online auction with donations from some of our wonderful poppy partners and a bucket collection in support of Armed Forces Day on Saturday June 26.”

Poppy partner Arbroath-based Toll House Spirits are working on a range of new products which will also raise funds for Poppy Scotland.

With a launch planned for the spring, these new spirits will carry the official Poppy Scotland logo with £1 per bottle going straight to the appeal throughout this centenary year.

More than nine million cloth poppies were made to go on sale from November 11 1921.

However, such was the nation’s desire to remember those lost during the Great War that they sold out almost immediately.

The first Poppy appeal raised more than £106,000 nationwide, with funds used to help veterans find jobs and homes.

Last week the Dunfermline branch of the Scottish Poppy Appeal announced they had raised £40,000 this year, despite fears the pandemic would see donations plummet.

Poppyscotland’s head of fundraising Gordon Michie said: “To continue that success in such challenging circumstances is a huge achievement.”

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