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Royal British Legion courts stars like Bear Grylls to front WWI centenary campaign


As we reach one hundred years since the end of World War I, The Royal British Legion, along with a number of recognisable personalities, give thanks to The Great War generation and the legacy they left behind.

The centenary campaign, created by Leagas Delaney, is the culmination of The British Legion's 'Thank You' movement, and features such prominent TV British figures as Bear Grylls and Mark Strong, alongside revered war veteran lance sergeant Johnson Beharry VC and Justine Roberts, the founder of Mumsnet.

Running alongside the Poppy Appeal, the campaign aims to not only recognise the sacrifices made by the Armed Forces, but by those men, women and children who remained on the Home Front, and the legacy that flowered out of the hardship.

Acknowledging that their wonderful legacy includes not just ground-breaking social change and works of art, throughout the film, the star-studded cast recognise the pioneering innovations in medicine and technology that came out of the war, such as prosthetics and parachutes.

The campaign will run across social media, key publishers, digital billboards, YouTube and TV, where it will appear during The X Factor on 3 November.

Gary Ryan, director of remembrance and marketing at The Royal British Legion, said: “Our ‘Thank You’ ad campaign is the pinnacle of a national movement to honour not just those who fought and died in the First World War, but everyone – military and civilian – who served, sacrificed and ultimately changed our world for the better.

"As we pay our respects a hundred years on, everyone has a reason to say ‘Thank You’. We can all find a connection to the First World War. We encourage everyone to reflect on a period that literally redrew the world map and brought about profound social change, notably women in the UK receiving the vote. We’d like to thank all our partners for supporting our centenary movement.”

Fergus Hay, chief executive officer at Leagas Delaney, said: “As we reach a hundred years since the end of the First World War, we can not only honour the fallen but celebrate the incredible legacy of those left behind. We’re grateful to our cast of public figures giving thanks and reminding today’s generation of the incredible resource and bravery of our forebears."

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