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The Cornish Pirates were delighted to welcome representatives of The Veterans Charity to the Mennaye Field when the team played London Scottish recently, and despite the rather poor weather the worthy sum of £334-65 was raised. Contacting the club since, their representative Jimmy Clark commented:
“Many thanks for allowing the Veterans Charity to make a collection once again. Considering the slightly damp conditions, Pirate fans again showed their support for the veteran community, and we collected a fantastic £334-65 which will go a long way to help Veterans and their families in their hour of need. Also, as bonus, it was a great start to the league campaign for the Pirates!”
Also, on the night, Iain Henderson (pictured second left) brought along a special wreath.
Photo credit: Phil Westren
It is a hand-made wreath by Veterans in Cornwall made of scallop shells, wood (the ring-shaped base), which is wrapped in hessian as used in sandbags and barbed wire (made from leather for health and safety) to represent the D-Day defences the troops would have to come up against in June 1944. The Poppies are painted red, black – for Commonwealth troops, white – for peace, and purple – for the animals of war.
In the run up to Armed Forces Day in Falmouth earlier in the summer the wreath started its tour with a veteran escort onboard HMS Blazer, a P2000 Patrol Boat.
It liaised with a Merlin Helicopter from Culdrose who winched down to pick it up to fly it back to shore, and from there it was picked up in a WW2 Jeep (so it had travelled by Land, Sea and Air) to the main events Square.
Since then, it has visited D-Day sites and will head up to London as part of Poppies to Paddington 4, whilst next year, along with seven other wreaths, it will sail onboard a Royal Navy warship to Normandy. Another wreath will represent France (the French Resistance). All wreaths will go to rest on key D-Day memorials.