PLENTY of people will have bought a poppy to support the Armed Forces community, past and present. 

But how many know how their donation will be spent?

We took a look at the Royal British Legion's 2016 report to give you a quick overview. 

What is the Poppy Appeal?

The Poppy Appeal is the Royal British Legion’s biggest fundraising campaign held every year in November.

Each year, an army of volunteers distribute the iconic paper poppies throughout the nation, collecting donations in return.

Members of the public wear the paper poppy on their chest as a symbol of Remembrance: to remember the fallen service men and women killed in conflict.

How did it all begin?

The first Poppy Appeal was held in 1921, the founding year of The Royal British Legion.

Red silk poppies, inspired by the famous First World War poem In Flanders Fields, sold out instantly and raised more than £106,000.

The funds helped First World War veterans find employment and housing after the war.

How is the money raised?

Bradford Telegraph and Argus:

How much was raised last year?

In total last year, £47.6m was raised from the Poppy Appeal alone. 

The total income for the charity was £146.9m which was split like this:

Bradford Telegraph and Argus:

Credit: Royal British Legion

  • Welfare - Ensuring members of the Armed Forces community receive the support they need, from rehabilitation courses to careers advice for those leaving Service.
  • Remembrance - Helping the nation understand the importance of Remembrance to make sure sacrifices from conflicts old and new are never forgotten.
  • Campaigns - The charity campaigns to improve the lives of service people by lobbying Government on issues relating to the Armed Forces.
  • Membership - Legion membership is a network of service personnel, veterans and civilians who care about the cause. Members volunteer and fundraise to help deliver even more support.
  • Fundraising - This takes place all year round to make sure the charity continues to support the Armed Forces community

What was the money spent on?

There's a wide variety but just to give you an idea:

  • £10.1m was spent on the National Memorial Arboretum visitor centre and sensory garden
  • £1.8m was spent on a dementia wing extension at Maurice House in Kent
  • More than £49.3m was spent on welfare services including 16 pop in centres, a freephone contact centre and six care homes as well as break centres and support for more than 300 family and friends at the Invictus Games who were described as the 'team behind the team'. 
  • The charity's mesothelioma campaigning also meant a £140,000 lump sum compensation award for diagnosed veterans
  • A free app explaining what happened during the Battle of the Somme has been downloaded 41,000 times
  • There was also £35.2 million on salaries including 24 people who earn more than £60,000 a year