GENEROUS staff at Lloyds Bank in Redditch have pledged to raise £10,000 so ex paras in the town can pay tribute to comrades who lost their lives fighting for their country.

Staff from the bank, in Church Green, set themselves the massive target to enable ex servicemen from the Redditch branch of the Parachute Regimental Association to visit Holland later this year to mark the 70th anniversary of the battle of Arnhem during the Second World War.

More than £4,000 has been raised so far.

Recently a special fundraising event saw people walking 255 miles on a step machine, the distance from Redditch to the site of the D Day landings in Normandy.

Redditch MP Karen Lumley, who attended the event, said: " I was delighted to join Barry Tansley, a leading member of the parachute branch, and the ex paras at Lloyds Bank to support them.

"This is one of the big successes from my funding fair I held in October where charities and groups were able to listen to funders, like the big lottery and Lloyds Bank, and learn how to access cash.

"At the fair Barry was able to explain to the Lloyds Bank team the details of what the charity was all about and Lloyds Bank agreed to match them pound for pound towards their £10k target.

"Lloyds bank were extremely impressed by how hard Barry works to enable ex servicemen to visit war sites every year.

"My husband and I were able to join them last year and I laid a wreath on behalf of the people of Redditch at Menin gate. It was a memorable occasion and indeed we are hoping to join them again this year."

The MP added: "The staff at Lloyds have been amazing and have worked tirelessly to raise funds for these ex troops.

"This to me is the big society at its best and I am so pleased that I am able to be a small part of this great project."