World War One is not even a distant memory, it has been consigned to the history books. World War Two is still a distant memory but to fewer people every year and this conflict will also soon be consigned to the history books.

So why do we still commemorate the fallen from these two wars? The imagery from these wars is still so strong as to create a picture in people’s minds, but there have been countless conflicts since 1945. Our servicemen are called upon by successive governments to maintain the peace. They ‘Take the King’s Shilling’ willingly knowing that they put their lives on the line for those left at home.

The Royal British Legion is there to give continued support to those service personnel, still serving and retired as well as supporting their families. On the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, the nation gathers together to show their respect to the fallen, (now on the closest Sunday following that date) however, the Legion cannot help those who have lost their lives, (but they do help the families of those who have given their life) but they can help those who have sustained injuries and health issues as a result of their service. This is not confined to battlefield injuries but to any issue a servicing or retired service man or woman may have sustained.

To achieve this task, which is enormous, the Legion need to find the money to fund the help given. The annual Poppy Appeal is the major fundraising event which happens not only in the UK but also abroad from local Legion branches.

Midsomer Norton, Radstock and the surrounding area have traditionally given so much to the cause and the Branch are indebted to the people of the region for the fantastic amounts raised in previous years.

However, the local appeal is only ever as successful as their last appeal.

This year, the appeal starts on the 27th October and ends on the 11th November.

The Branch will have unmanned poppy boxes in many of the shops and will also have manned collecting points at the Farmer’s Market, Lidl’s and Tesco’s.

All the money raised, is used to support our troops, past and present and their families either directly or through rehabilitation centres.

Alison Wilson