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Laura Williams created 500 poppy badges
The granddaughter of a Second World War veteran has raised almost £4,000 for the Royal British Legion by making and selling her own glamorous poppies.
Laura Williams, of Ash Close, Watford, created 500 decorative badges made from stiff material covered in glitter, black buttons and safety pins glued on the back.
Each one took 15 minutes to create, meaning the batch took Ms Williams a total of 125 hours - more than three full-time working weeks - to make.
This is the second year in a row Ms Williams has made the poppies, having raised £679 in 2011.
The 25-year-old said: "Last year I made 50, and when those sold out I made another 50, so this year I decided to make 500, which was crazy and took a ridiculous amount of time.
"I thought I wouldn’t be able to sell them all but they went really well and I sold them all. They really appeal to people.
"I think their success is down to the modern-day love of sparkle, partly down to Strictly Come Dancing."
Ms Williams, whose grandfather was a naval officer in the Second World War and served on minesweepers near the Normandy beaches, sold nearly 200 of the poppies to her colleagues at BRE research centre, in Bucknalls Lane, Garston.
The company matched the £1,000 she raised there, bringing her total to £3,863.10.
She said: "I was hoping to get to £3,000 so I’m absolutely delighted, I’m so glad people have been so receptive.
"The idea of remembrance is pretty close to people’s hearts and they want to support it.
"I had calls from about 25 or 30 people asking if they can buy a poppy but I’ve got none left."
The Royal British Legion’s Poppy Appeal takes place every year in the weeks leading up to Remembrance Day and raises money which is used to support members of the armed forces.
Ms Williams said she was driven to create the badges in order to ensure the sacrifice made by armed services personnel was not forgotten.
She added: "Young people have no connection with the First World War, and the last surviving Spitfire pilot died this year.
"Remembrance is really important, people will get to the point where it doesn’t mean anything to them, and if we forget, we’re doomed to make the same mistakes again."