POPPY Appeal collectors have returned to intu Merry Hill - despite the coronavirus pandemic - to help raise funds for Britain's Armed Forces heroes and their families.

Volunteer collectors will be manning three pop-up stalls on behalf of The Royal British Legion, selling poppies, wreaths, badges and more in return for a donation, in the run-up to Remembrance Sunday which will be on November 9 this year.

Last year Merry Hill shoppers donated more than £30,000 to help the charity continue its vital work delivering life-long support to service and ex-service personnel and their families.

Rachael Jackson, general manager at the shopping centre, said: “We are delighted to see The Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal stall return to the centre for another year and now more than ever we’re encouraging our visitors to get behind this great cause.

“Of course, the health and wellbeing of our staff and visitors remains our number one priority and we ask that all visitors to the centre follow the latest Government guidelines and comply with the latest safety measures we have in place.”

The Royal British Legion’s director of fundraising, Claire Rowcliffe, said: “The Covid-19 pandemic has had an overwhelming impact on people’s livelihoods and way of life, leaving some in the Armed Forces community in dire need of urgent help and support.

“The legion’s work is more vital than ever as we support our community through additional hardships, from those struggling with social isolation, financial difficulties and unemployment, to those who have lost loved ones or are facing the threat of homelessness. Every poppy counts.”

Those unable to make a donation at the centre are invited to order poppies through the post, print a poppy to display at home, or undertake a virtual Poppy Run.

Fundraising ideas can be found online at rbl.org.uk/poppyappeal.