Sunderland theatre-goers raise £13,000 for armed forces personnel

Peter Robson, deputy general manager at Sunderland Empire Theatre, presents a cheque to Marcus Hawthorn, area manager (northern) for the Royal British Legion.
Peter Robson, deputy general manager at Sunderland Empire Theatre, presents a cheque to Marcus Hawthorn, area manager (northern) for the Royal British Legion.
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ARMED forces personnel have been given a helping hand thanks to generous theatre-goers.

More than £13,000 has been raised by Sunderland Empire audiences over the past year, who have dug deep to support The Royal British Legion, the theatre’s chosen charity for 2014.

Marcus Hawthorn, northern area manager for The Royal British Legion, said: “It’s a staggering testament to the sacrifice our servicemen and women past and present have been prepared to make, and recognition of the importance of helping those in need to live on.”

The Royal British Legion has been helping service personnel past and present for more 90 years. It provides £1.6million every week in direct welfare support – that’s more than £83million each year – and responds to more than 170,000 calls annually for practical help, advice and support.

Locally, the legion has helped 1,200 serving personnel, veterans and their families across the North East. Peter Robson, deputy general manager, Sunderland Empire, said: “We are delighted with the generosity shown from our patrons in supporting the Royal British Legion.”

Collections have now begun for the Empire’s chosen charity for 2015 – NSPCC North East.