Surrey Comet story helps save Surbiton Poppy Appeal
Another poppy appeal in the borough under threat has been saved after a candidate directed to the Royal British Legion by the Surrey Comet was hired.
Nurse Kevin Whincop, pictured, called the Surrey Comet about the Malden and Coombe poppy appeal posiition after reading that branch’s organiser was forced to step down due to illness.
The 34-year-old family man from Raynes Park has now been offered the voluntary job with the Surbiton branch of the Royal British Legion.
Mr Whincop, father to an autistic four-year-old boy, said: “This is something close to my heart.
“My granddad used to belong to the Royal British Legion club and I know the poppy appeal was a massive thing and he used to collect.
“My grandfather, Harry Robinson, passed away in 1995.
“We have got younger people that could help. It is a shame there are not more people outside the forces collecting.”
Peter Wakeham, ex-Army man and fundraising officer at the Royal British Legion in Surrey, said: “The Surbiton poppy appeal organiser has been taken ill in hospital so we had the same problem that we had in New Malden.
“I called up this lovely chap called Kevin whose details you passed on and told him.
“Last year, the two appeals made more than £50,000. It is heartbreaking when you cannot run the poppy appeal.
“I am so so grateful to the Comet. You found us both. We were not looking good, but your appeal has set things right.”
Kevin Whincup with chairman Ken Watson
Mr Whincop said: “I am really looking forward to it.
“I do not really know anybody in the area, but I am really looking forward to working with the Royal British Legion and using their expertise.
“I hope to match last year.
“I just hope I can do as well as the previous gentleman.”
The Surbiton branch of the poppy appeal is also looking for more volunteers.