SHIRLEY Royal British Legion is hoping that people will dig deep for this year’s Poppy Appeal.
The fund raising campaign was launched by Solihull MP Lorely Burt at Shirley Library on Monday.
Members hope that the branch will beat last year’s total, when locals gave a whopping £17,000.
Chairman Ernie Riley said: “Last year we noticed a real surge in interest because of recent events [in Iraq and Afghanistan].
“While Help for Heroes is doing a grand job, the legion has been helping serving and ex-servicemen, and their families, since 1921.
“It’s not just veterans we help, but people who are still in the armed forces today.”
And Mrs Burt encouraged people to support the charity - which will celebrate its 90th birthday next year.
“Hopefully one day, we won’t be in the situation where young servicemen are being killed serving their country,” she said.
“But that’s what’s happening at the moment and we need people to come forward and support this campaign.”
Poppies will be on sale in local shops, banks and businesses, and a Remembrance Day Parade will take place on November 14.
While some legions have found it increasingly difficult to meet the running costs, Shirley Lions have stepped in to help.
Lion Ken Barker said: “We’re going to be providing the man-power on the day, helping to marshall the traffic.
“There are limits to what the police will do these days and private security firms are very expensive, so we offered our services to help save money.”
* If you want to volunteer call John Barney on 0121 603 7849 and if you’d like to support the appeal, ring Steve Coley on 0121 777 2641.