King’s Lynn military support charity features in ITV soap - and founder Nikki Scott wins award

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Millions of television viewers couldn’t have failed to notice a West Norfolk charity featuring on one of the country’s most popular soap operas.

Even if you blinked and missed the first time, there was plenty of chance later in the show to catch the charity’s logo which came in for some lingering close-ups.

A bright red, hooded sweatshirt featuring the logo for Scotty’s Little Soldiers was on screen several times during an episode of Coronation Street this week.

Young actor Alex Bain, who plays Ken Barlow’s grandson Simon, was sporting his Scotty’s hoodie throughout Monday night’s show.

It’s not the first time the King’s Lynn-based charity has been helped by the soap, as actor Anthony Cotton, who plays Sean Tully, wore a Scotty’s wristband earlier in the year.

The show’s Simon Gregson, who plays Steve McDonald, is a patron of the charity and firm links have been forged between Norfolk and Manchester.

Scotty’s Little Soldiers was founded by Nikki Scott in memory of her husband Lee who was killed while serving with the army in Afghanistan in 2009.

She received a national award for her work at a ceremony in London last week attended by the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall.

The charity’s team celebrated as Mrs Scott was awarded a Millie at the star-studded event arranged by national newspaper The Sun to honour those involved in military life.

The show was recorded for TV and will be shown on Friday at 9pm on ITV1.

She received the award from celebrity chef Jamie Oliver and was one of many recipients who inspired and touched the judges.

Writing on his blog the day after the event, Lord Ashcroft said: “One of the many highlights of last night was an insight into Scotty’s Little Soldiers, a charity launched to support the children of men and women killed whilst serving in the British Armed Forces.

“Some of the children who have benefited from the charity were on stage: at Christmas the charity provides toys and other gifts for the sons and daughters of parents who have died in service. I was so touched by Mrs Scott’s achievements that I have already made a donation to Scotty’s Little Soldiers.”

Lord Ashcroft is a member of the Privy Council and the Government’s Special Representative for Veterans’ Transition, working to ensure military personnel receive the support they need when returning to civilian life.

Scotty’s Little Soldiers funds treats and trips for the children of servicemen and women who are killed in action.

Father-of-two Mr Gregson, whose fictional dad Jim McDonald spent much of his time away with the army, arranged a trip to the Corrie set in Manchester for some of the children earlier this year.

“I have a huge respect for all of our service men and women, the job they do must be among the hardest in the world for them and their families. For this reason I am extremely proud to be a patron of Scotty’s Little Soldiers, a wonderful charity to help some wonderful people,” he said.

The charity has opened a holiday home in Great Yarmouth and is set to open a second in Blackpool next spring.

For more information see www.scottyslittlesoldiers.co.uk

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