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Tuesday, 27 October 2009

BBC presenters and the Poppy

Every year I get angry about this and I never vent it, well this is the year, sit back and relax. From last week onwards the presenters on the BBC all end up wearing pristine poppies day in, day out.
First it is those on BBC News, then it spreads along other shows until everyone is wearing them, I suspect that as time goes on we will see the stars on Strictly Come Dancing wearing them as well and that is when it will really annoy me.

However, the staff haven't picked these poppies up in their local shops, they are instructed to wear them.

The wearing of a poppy in my opinion is a personal choice, it resembles the blood of those who have fallen in battle, giving their lives so we can live a better life.

To me, I wear the poppy each year to remember my Grandad who served and fought in the first and second world wars, and lived to tell the tale and for my Uncle, Nigel who served in the Falklands war 25 years ago, again living to tell the tale and for all those who served with them who didn't make it back, they lost their lives on the battlefield for us.

Imagine for just a moment if Hitler had won the second world war, would we enjoy the same freedom, fairness and democracy we enjoy today? I suspect not.

So why does the BBC think it acceptable to commercialise the poppy and make it part of their staff corporate uniform? Does the BBC make a donation to the Royal British Legion for bulk purchase of poppies each year? Do the staff get asked to make a donation for each poppy they wear?

A Poppy donation from your mobile for England & Wales (not iphones);

Text the word POPPY to 70222 - to make a donation to The Royal British Legion. (Texts cost £1.50 plus your standard network message charge). At least £1.00* goes directly to the Legion.

Please obtain the bill payers permission. Customer Service number is 0844 991 0078. All calls to this number will cost 5p per minute.

The service is provided by The Royal British Legion. By using this service you agree that we may contact you for future campaigns, unless you send STOP to 70222.

* Most text donations will generate at least £1 to the Poppy Appeal, text donations from Virgin, 3 and T-Mobile customers will be lower than £1. Suitable for WAP enabled phones only. Not available on i-phones.

For Poppy Scotland you can donate online.


Unknown said...

For some reason that I never understood the British Legion poppy appeal only applies in England and Wales. In Scotland, the poppy appeal is ran by the Earl Haig Fund and donations can be made here:

You can tell the difference between the poppies as a Scottish poppy does not have a leaf.

On Andrew's main point, although I agree with the sentiment I can also appreciate how many complaints the BBC (and other broadcasters) will get whenever someone appears without a poppy. In my previous incarnation I always kept a couple on my desk for any politician about to do a TV interview as appearing without one would inevitably result in a trickle of telephone calls to party HQ.

Rankersbo said...

I remember in my youth in Northern England the button of the poppy said Haig Fund.

Jago Holmes said...

Hoorah for you, I completely agree with your point. Also totally behind you on the fight for our country, definately should be remembered.

Unfortunately as the generations progress far fewer will truly understand what our fore fathers had to go through during both world wars.


J.J said...

By coincidence I ended up writing about this same subject yesterday - and now of course we are supposed to believe viewers have complained because Strictly Come Dancers competitors did not wear a poppy last weekend - ridiculous.

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