Sunday 5 November 2017

Jaguar F-Type Landmark Gets Stunning Poppy Appeal Makeover

Jaguar Land Rover has unveiled a 35-foot high Jaguar F-TYPE emblazoned with a bespoke poppy design to mark Remembrance Sunday in partnership with forces’ motorsport charity Mission Motorsport and the Royal British Legion.

The F-TYPE, clearly visible to motorists on the M6 motorway, fittingly faces the Sentinel sculpture which depicts the Spitfires Castle Bromwich was famous for building during World War Two between 1938 and 1945.

The tribute is the latest in a string of commitments from the company as it aims to become the automotive employer of choice for former armed services personnel.

Jaguar Land Rover has hired over 750 former servicemen and servicewomen since 2013 and is a Gold Award holder of the Armed Forces Covenant Employer Recognition Scheme, a written and publicised voluntary pledge from businesses and charitable organisations who wish to demonstrate their concrete support for the Armed Forces community.

It has welcomed a total of 29 ex-armed forces personnel on to its Wounded Injured Sick (WIS) programme since 2014, 18 of which have found employment with the UK’s largest automotive manufacturer whilst many others have secured roles within the wider supply base.

The business is also the headline partner of the annual Invictus Games, an international sporting event to inspire recovery, support rehabilitation and generate a wider understanding and respect for wounded, injured and sick servicemen, servicewomen and veterans.

Mission Motorsport, the Ministry Of Defence’s charitable authority on motorsport for recovery, created a unique poppy-themed livery for the F-TYPE which sits affixed to the outer wall of Jaguar Land Rover’s Castle Bromwich site where the sports car is built.

The design, emblazoned with the words of John McCrae's poem In Flanders Fields written in 1915 in the midst of World War One, was fitted in situ by the charity’s team of ex-servicemen who were discharged from active service with physical and mental injuries.

Ex-servicemen Lance Corporal Chris Read, Guardsman Chris Walker, Private Dan Elliot and Lance Corporal Francis Stokes, who all benefitted from the work of Mission Motorsport, spent more than three weeks designing the unique livery before fitting it directly to the wall-mounted F-TYPE.

A second F-TYPE SVR was adorned with the poppy design at Mission Motorsport’s workshop in Wantage, Oxfordshire. It embarked on a ten-day UK tour in the lead up to Remembrance Sunday, which started at the Royal British Legion’s Birmingham Poppy Day in Victoria Square on Wednesday 1st November.

From there it makes its way around Jaguar Land Rover sites and military landmarks such as the National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire before arriving in Anglesey to play the role of safety car for Mission Motorsport’s fourth annual 12-hour endurance event Race of Remembrance.

Gregg Niblett, former Royal Engineer and F-TYPE Senior Manufacturing Manager at Jaguar Land Rover’s Castle Bromwich facility said:

“The Castle Bromwich site has developed a proud reputation of paying tribute to its heritage, the role it played in one of history’s largest conflicts but most importantly those who sacrificed their lives along the way.
“We already have a fantastic working relationship with Mission Motorsport and a track record for recruiting former members of the armed forces, so we felt there was an opportunity to do something truly special as we move into the site’s 80th year next year.
“The project team, made up of colleagues from Jaguar Land Rover, Mission Motorsport and the Royal British Legion, have worked tremendously hard to create a statement of commitment in remembering the fallen and to have that tribute created and brought to life by ex-servicemen who have had first-hand experience of sacrifice is hugely symbolic.
“We’re extremely proud to have this tribute on our wall for the community to see and we hope they join us as we fall silent over on Remembrance weekend.”

Jane Britton, Area Manager West Midlands, Royal British Legion said:

“The Poppy Appeal 2017 is encouraging the public to rethink Remembrance and recognise that the poppy supports the Armed Forces community past and present – it is a symbol of both Remembrance and hope.
“This message is very relevant within the local community and resonates greatly with Jaguar Land Rover, who have employed veterans and worked directly with Mission Motorsport. We are amazed by their support in creating awareness for this year’s Appeal and cannot wait to unveil the Remembrance design at Birmingham Poppy Day on Wednesday 1 November.”

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