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Queen’s Birthday Honours 2018: Poppy seller, 103, gets MBE

Queen’s Birthday Honours 2018: Poppy seller, 103, gets MBE

Rosemary Powell is thought to be Britain's longest serving, and oldest, poppy seller
Britain's longest-serving poppy seller is to be appointed an MBE in the Queen's birthday honours list. Rosemary Powell, 103, plans to retire from selling poppies later this year after a remarkable 97 years of collecting for the appeal. She first helped her mother sell poppies on Richmond Bridge for the Royal British Legion's first Poppy Appeal in 1921 when aged six. The great-grandmother, from London, is said to be "over the moon"."It is very nice that I have been given this," she said. "I still vividly remember selling poppies on Richmond Bridge with my mother."
Her son Giles added: "Mum is absolutely over the moon. It's great recognition for a lot of hard work."
After the World War Two Mrs Powell spent time living abroad but she continued to fundraise
Mrs Powell's first fiance Robin Ellis - a commander in the Royal Navy - died in 1944 when the Lancaster bomber he was flying crashed near Inverness.Her father Charles Ashton James served with the 126th Baluchistan Infantry and was left wounded after being shot in the head during the Battle of the Somme. She lost two godfathers and three uncles during World War One as well as her younger brother Peter, a major in the Army, died during the World War Two. During WW2, Mrs Powell trained as a voluntary aid detachment (VAD) nurse providing civilian nursing to the military. Mrs Powell lived close to where poppies were made in Richmond for the first Poppy Appeal and sold them on the bridge with her mother, Evelyn. They ran out in "no time" and so her mother fashioned new poppies out of red crepe paper bought from a nearby flower shop.
Richmond
London
Birthday Honours
World War One
World War Two
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