Remembrance Sunday Harrogate

Knaresborough Royal British Legion to start appeal but it will need to be different this year

19 October 2020

The Knaresborough Branch of the Royal British Legion is preparing to mark Remembrance and raise much needed funds through the Poppy Appeal this year despite the ongoing Covid-19 virus and government measures.

  • Only 20% of usual collection boxes
  • Help needed in selling poppies
  • No remembrance service or parade
  • People asked to pay respects at home rather than at war memorial
  • Knitted poppies can’t be installed in castle grounds

Speaking for the Branch vice-chair David Houlgate said:

As things currently stand, the Poppy appeal is going ahead and starts on Saturday 24 October but following advice from the RBL nationally we are having to limit the number of collection boxes we can distribute this year to 20% of our usual number of boxes.

So sadly some shops and businesses won’t be getting the collection boxes this year.  We’d like to take this opportunity to thank all those that have in the past and we hope things will be back to normal next year.

We also need help in selling poppies at Lidl and Marks and Spencers.  If you can spare some time, even if just an hour, please ring our Branch Chair, Alan Pichfork on 07984-700429.

There will also be no street selling on the High Street or in the market place though we do currently have plans to have a market stall on Wednesday 4 November at Knaresborough market. This will be limited to the traditional poppies and pin badges.

Sadly, there will be no traditional Remembrance Sunday Church service at St John’s church and no parade through the town to the war memorial.

Arrangements are being made to lay wreaths safely but towns folk are discouraged this year from attending at the war memorial as is the usual tradition.  We must keep the numbers to a minimum, focus attendance on those wishing to lay wreaths and observe social distancing at all times.

We therefore ask that people please pay their respects in their own way at home and hold their own two minutes silence at 11 am.  People are being encouraged to stand at their doors to do this at that time.

Unfortunately, we are unable to install the knitted poppies at the castle grounds this year which we introduced last year.  This would have been year two of the three year ‘Knit for Knaresborough’ project building towards the centenary of the Royal British Legion next year.  We are grateful to all the people who have contributed thousands of knitted poppies so far and remain hopeful that by the time of Remembrance next year, the world will be in a much better situation with Covid than is currently the case.

It is still our intention though to put up the lamp post poppies and flags we have introduced to the town in recent years.

The most important thing now though is that people stay safe.

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