Sheffield travel sweet company joins forces with the Royal British Legion

A Sheffield travel sweet company has partnered with the Royal British Legion, as both organisations mark their 100th anniversary this year.

Wednesday, 14th July 2021, 3:56 pm

AL Simpkin & Co Ltd confirmed the partnership after learning the Royal British Legion (RBL) brought in less than half the amount of donations from the Poppy Appeal in 2020 it raised the previous year, with £24million collected in 2020 compared with £50million in 2019.With no face-to-face fundraising in the past year, the RBL has had to find new and creative ways to raise funds.Managing Director Adrian Simpkin, part of the third generation to run the Hillsborough-based family business, said: “We are delighted to join forces with the RBL and are confident our donations will support their work for the armed forces community, and I hope that this will be the start of a long partnership.”

Second Lieutenant Leslie Simpkin founded the company in 1921 after returning from World War 1. Leslie was injured at the Somme and was awarded the Military Cross for his service.

Their sweets can be found in service stations, chemists and airport shops across the globe in the familiar iconic gold, circular tin. They produce around five million sweets from their factory in Sheffield every single week.Adrian, a former Royal Marine, said: “Myself and the team here at AL Simpkin are honoured to be working with the RBL during such a milestone year, especially since this remarkable charity is so close to the nation’s hearts.”

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Simpkins have joined forces with the Royal British Legion, as both organisations mark their 100th anniversary

“People have their own personal links to the forces and reasons to support the charity. My grandfather proudly served during the First World War before going on to found the company in 1921, using some of his demob money. My father also served in the Marines, as well.

“During World War Two, our family firm supplied glucose drops to the RAF for high-altitude flying missions.”

The idea for the boiled sweets came to Leslie while he was being treated for shrapnel injuries. He was given liquid glucose, which prompted him to think about boiling it instead.

Ben France, Head of Corporate Partnerships at the RBL, said: “We are delighted to be working in partnership with AL Simpkin and we are very grateful for their generous pledge of donations from sales of their market-leading travel sweets.

“This is a wonderful way to mark our centenary and the donations raised will be used to provide life-long support to serving and ex-serving members of the British Armed Forces, their families and dependents through hardships, injuries and bereavements.“As we both mark our 100th anniversaries, we are delighted to be able to launch this new partnership.”

AL Simpkin are world famous as the original manufacturer of Gluten free travel sweets in tins, using only all-natural colours and flavours, but now those tins will proudly display the logo of the RBL in its centenary year.

The sweets are now available in shops or online at

Another special tin to mark the period of Remembrance are set to be launched later this year.