A flotilla on the River Trent will help to officially launch the 2012 Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal this Saturday, 20 October.
The flotilla will arrive at County Hall to deliver the first poppies of 2012 to the Chairman of Nottinghamshire County Council and new Lord Lieutenant of Nottinghamshire .
After the flotilla docks, Councillor Carol Pepper and Sir John Peace will buy the first poppies from the Leading Sea Cadet to mark the official launch of the appeal.
The event will also be attended by dignitaries from councils across Nottinghamshire, the President of the Royal British Legion, the Venerable Air Vice-Marshal Robin Turner CB DL and serving personnel, including Lance Corporal Sharpe of the Sherwood Rangers who is about to be deployed to Afghanistan and Lance Corporal Clarke of the same regiment who has recently returned.
Last year more than £600,000 was raised through the Poppy Appeal in Nottinghamshire, an increase of £63,000 on the previous year. A further £60,000 was raised in the City of Nottingham, a £6,000 increase on 2011.
Councillor Pepper said, "The Poppy Appeal is rightly one of the best known and supported campaigns in the UK. It is my privilege to help launch this year’s campaign in Nottinghamshire by buying the first poppy.
"The Royal British Legion provides serving and former armed forces personnel and their families with vital support in a multitude of ways.
“I would encourage everyone in Nottinghamshire – young and old – to show their support for our serving armed forces and veterans by buying a poppy and wearing it with pride.”
Nottinghamshire County Council is working with the Royal British Legion in the development of a Community Covenant, which will set out ways in which the Council can work with the Legion to develop and promote services for serving members of the armed forced forces and veterans.
The Community Covenant is set to be agreed at the next Full Council meeting on 1 November.