INJURED servicemen and women will be able to enjoy a superb Christmas dinner of Yorkshire free-range turkey, thanks to one of the region’s farmers.
Tim Lindley, of Hostingley Farm at Thornhill near Dewsbury, is to donate turkeys as part of the national Turkeys for Troops appeal.
Launched by the NFU’s UK Turkeys website in collaboration with Connect Packaging and the Ministry of Defence, the aim is to present soldiers, past and present, with a delicious farm-reared bird for their Christmas feast.
More than 100 birds will be delivered to seven locations around the country including the Personnel Recovery Unit at Catterick Garrison in North Yorkshire. The other recipients are Headley Court in Surrey, Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham, the Royal Star and Garter in Richmond, the Royal Hospital in Chelsea as well as units in Colchester and Edinburgh.
Mr Lindley, who runs Hostingley Farm with his wife Lynne, is one small, local producer inspired to support the appeal. He rears free range traditional Bronze and White turkeys on his farm every year, as well as a smaller number of geese, which are sold both from the farm and through 10 local farm shops.
He said: “We were delighted to donate some of our Christmas turkeys this year. It is just a small token of our appreciation for our armed forces who give so much to keep us safe and uphold the values of our country.
“Our birds are reared with all the care we can give them so it’s fitting that they should form the centrepiece of a festive celebration so thoroughly deserved by so many.”
Lt Col Mel Pears, Commanding Officer of the 15x (NE) Personnel Recovery Unit in Catterick, said: “I would like to, on behalf of every soldier under my command, say thank you to the NFU. The wounded, injured and sick of the 15x (NE) PRU are very pleased with this practical demonstration of support, a gift of turkeys this Christmas.
“It will provide happiness and comfort to each family during what will be a reflective and emotional time. I would like to add my personal thanks to those involved with providing this gift - knowing that people are thinking of our injured troops at this time makes a real difference.”
NFU regional director Barney Kay said: “We are extremely grateful for the generosity shown by our local turkey producers, who themselves have had a difficult time of it this year.
“They epitomise the spirit of our Farming Delivers for Christmas campaign which aims to celebrate the quality and diversity of British produce at the heart of our festive celebrations.
“The Turkeys for Troops appeal is the jewel in the crown of this wider campaign and I’m delighted that our small local producers have been inspired to get involved. I’m sure their birds will be thoroughly enjoyed by the injured soldiers receiving them.”
Connect Packaging managing director Robert Davidson said: “Connect Packaging has provided high quality packaging for UK turkey producers for many years and we are delighted to support the turkey industry’s Turkeys for Troops initiative. We are proud to be part of this campaign that will deliver the best British farm fresh turkeys to our wonderful soldiers.”
Anyone interested in ordering a turkey from Hostingley Farm should visit www.hostingleyfarmfreerange.co.uk. Otherwise, shoppers looking for a locally bred turkey can log on to www.ukturkeys.co.uk