Hartlepool teenager becomes first to win new Poppy Appeal award for dedication to Royal British Legion

Hartlepool teenager Marley Haggan has become the first recipient of a new award for his dedication to the Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal.

Sunday, 8th September 2019, 9:00 am

Sixteen-year-old Marley won the first ever Danny Cassidy Poppy Appeal Award after being nominated for his outstanding support of Hartlepool’s annual appeal by the town’s organiser Sian Cameron.

It is given to a volunteer who has gone above and beyond and is in memory of county appeal fundraiser Danny, of Seaham, who died last year and helped to raise over £13 million.

A delighted Marley collected the award at a regional Poppy Appeal seminar held in Gateshead on Thursday, September 5.

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Marley Haggan with his award at the event in Gateshead.

He said: “I’m just honoured to be the first recipient of this award named after Danny.”

Sian said Marley’s dedication to the appeal is second to none with him giving up his half term holidays to man the stall, helping out after school and working up to 14 hours a day helping Sian to deliver 250 collection boxes across the town.

She said: “I nominated him for his absolute hard work and dedication. For a 16-year-old I can’t get over the amount of time he is willing to spend when most other people his age want to be out with their mates.

“He is always coming up with new ideas about how to help the appeal and he is there on the stall every single day from 9am to 7pm.

From left: Hartlepool Poppy Appeal organiser Sian Cameron, Marley Haggan with the Danny Cassidy Award and Danny's widow Cath.

“I couldn’t be prouder of him.”

Marley, of Rossmere, who now works for CBL Cables, in Hartlepool, has been part of the town Poppy Appeal since he was just 10.

“I started because I saw the good work they do for the armed forces community and families,” he said.

“Also my granddad and great-granddad both served in the Army so it was something I really wanted to help out with.

“When I was at school in the second week of the Poppy Appeal I used to go down after school when I had spare time.

“Now I’m at work I take holidays to do it because it’s important to me.”

He was presented with the award by Danny’s widow.

Julie Warters, community fundraiser for Durham, Wearside and North Tees, added: “As the first recipient of the Danny Cassidy Award, we are incredibly proud of the dedication and commitment to the Annual Poppy Appeal that Marley has shown for the past six years.

“He is a true inspiration of his generation, continually looking to increase the amazing total that Hartlepool raise during the Poppy Appeal.

“Our amazing volunteers, like Marley, are very much the lifeblood of the Poppy Appeal and it wouldn’t be possible without them.”