New Zealand soprano Hayley Westenra yesterday joined forces with Dame Vera Lynn to launch the UK's annual Poppy Appeal.
The duo performed Dame Vera's war-time hit We'll Meet Again during a colourful ceremony at London's Horse Guards Parade.
The appeal, which aims to raise £31m (NZ$68m), is intended to raise funds for "wounded heroes and bereaved Armed Forces families," said Russell Thompson, the Royal British Legion's Director of National Events and Fundraising.
"The past 12 months of bloody conflict have increased the need for our help both today and for years to come," he said.
More than 10,000 recent veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan have been given financial assistance by the Legion since 2003.
"In order to fund this work we would like this year's Poppy Appeal to equal last year's record total of £31 million," Thompson said.
Dame Vera, 92, became famous during the Second World War for her renditions of nostalgic songs like The White Cliffs of Dover and travelled extensively during the conflict, entertaining British troops.
Last month she became the oldest living artist to reach number one in the UK charts, with her compilation album We'll Meet Again: The Very Best of Vera Lynn.
"My songs were very popular when the boys were away, and now the boys are away again and my songs are popular again," said Dame Vera.
"I hope the British public support the Poppy Appeal and for their sake, please wear a poppy."
Hayley Westenra and Dame Vera Lynn sing We'll Meet Again
- NZ HERALD STAFF