The Lyme Regis branch of the Royal British Legion may be one of the smallest in Dorset, but when it comes to caring for veterans and raising money for the Poppy Fund it punches far above its weight.

That was the message from president Philip Evans MBE at the branch annual meeting held at the Woodmead Halls.

Mr Evans praised chairman Daniel Buckley and his committee for another year of “unstinting service to the community”.

Mr Evans told the meeting: “We are fortunate to have such a young chairman who has served his country well as a serving soldier with distinction and now working so hard for the Royal British Legion in our town.”

The president congratulated Mr Buckley on his role as parade marshal and for organising the recent Remembrance Day parade, the biggest he had seen in the town for several years.

Mr Evans referred to the great challenge facing the Royal British Legion in retaining membership and was pleased to see that the Lyme numbers had recently climbed above 100, reversing the decline in recent years.

Poppy organiser Jacqui Ward reported that the collection for the Poppy Fund in Lyme exceeded £4,000 and she paid tribute to all the collectors who offered their service.

Thanks were also extended to Mrs Judith Howells and Linda Bearpark for organising the Poppy collections in Charmouth.

Treasurer Jon Hunt reported a satisfactory financial year for the branch.

Officers elected: president – Philip Evans MBE; vice-president – Ian Marshall; chairman -Daniel Buckley; secretary – Nicole Parkinson-Ward; treasurer – Jon Hunt; branch community support – Ian Marshall; Poppy Organiser Lyme Regis – Jacqui Ward; Charmouth Poppy Organiser – Judith Howell ; committee members – Emma Blackmore (events), Ania Driver (assistant Poppy organiser).

President Philip Evans, a Legion member for 25 years, was honoured for his service, receiving the Jack Loveridge trophy, presented by his son, Les Loveridge.

The meeting concluded with an interesting talk by the acting county chairman Grant Parrott on how the county helped the welfare of veterans and their dependents in Dorset.