A CHANCE encounter with a not-too distant relative of Thomas ‘Todger’ Jones VC has given a boost to the campaign to install a statue in his memory.

Tony Miller, appeal treasurer, was astonished when a phone call to Anthony’s Travel revealed that company founder Tony was married to Todger’s great niece Anne.

The call led not only to a rare first-hand account of the First World War hero but also donations of £250 from the company and £250 from the family. Todger, who single-handedly captured a German trench and frogmarched 102 Germans back to allied lines, was Anne’s grandfather’s brother on her mother’s side.

With the Todger Jones appeal gathering pace Anne is keen to see the statue installed. The Todger Jones appeal has been asking firms and organisations to make a pledge of £250 each to help the statue bid reach its £60,000 target. To donate to the campaign visit www.todgerjonesstatueappeal.co.uk