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Two dedicated Brixham mothers have raised hundreds of pounds in support of British troops fighting in Afghanistan. Margot Lovegrove and Yvonne Perrie have posted more than 2,000 parcels packed with goodies to soldiers serving in the Middle East during the past year. Both woman have sons who have fought in Afghanistan, which is why they started sending out parcels to troops in the first place. The pair recently raised £138.55 running stalls at Brixham’s Cowtown Carnival and the Torbay Steam Rally.
Sales of Brixham calendars from their collection point at Ace Taxis in Union Lane brought in another £40 and a further £60 was donated by the Railway Cafe at Torquay train station from the sale of second-hand books. The money was spent in local shops buying treats such as boiled sweets, socks, pork scratchings and toothpaste to send out to the troops.
People from all over South Devon donate items, including regular deliveries from Totnes residents who bring in items collected by the community. In return for their good deeds, the pair have received dozens of thank-you letters from serving soldiers — some of which are on display in the taxi office.
Margot said: “We do this not just for our sons, but for everyone’s sons. The soldiers really appreciate the parcels which come from complete strangers when they’re out on the front line. They get their army rations but it’s nice to get a treat.”
Denise McDowell, who runs the taxi rank with her husband Steve, said: “What they do is fantastic. Steve is ex-military and he will do anything he can to support them. A lot of guys from Brixham are out in Afghanistan and many come in to thank them when they’re home on leave. They have received some really nice letters as well, and if people are willing they ask them to put their names and addresses in the boxes so the soldiers can write to them too.”
Locals and holidaymakers are welcome to pop into Ace Taxis to drop off items, including deodorant, wet-wipes and boxer shorts.
Steve added: “We have a wonderful collection of letters from the troops in the office from soldiers who are touched that so many people care about what Margot and Yvonne and everyone who donates is doing. If anyone has an individual soldier’s name, number and address please let us have it so that parcels can be sent to them. Even if people send their own boxes to their sons, we can still send one that he can share with others who don’t receive anything from home.”