Hertfordshire Poppy Appeal Launch 2011

21 October 2011, 17:07 | Updated: 21 October 2011, 18:00

The 90th poppy appeal has been launched in Hertfordshire at the Snow Centre in Hemel Hempstead. Special guest at the launch was 15 year old Max Baggio, Max is Number One on the British Junior Ski Team. He showed his support by skiing around giant poppies on the slopes.

The Poppy Appeal is run by the Royal British Legion that helps servicemen and ex-servicemen with everything from setting up rehabilitation centres for wounded soldiers to helping individuals set up home after their service.

At the launch was a Hertfordshire man who received help from the Royal British Legion. Ex-soldier Michael Lake struggled to adjust to life after the army he turned to alcohol and became depressed. The Royal British Legion helped get Michael back on his feet: "I was handed the number of the British Legion, phoned them up, they got me on a course and got my life back on track. I've just had a son and the British Legion helped furnish our house, a cot for my son that I was embarrassed I couldn't provide but the legion didn’t make you feel that way they made you feel special"

Last year, Hertfordshire raised around £715,000 during the poppy appeal, this contributed to a record-breaking national total of £40m. This year is the 90th appeal and they hope to raise the most money yet.