A Royal British Legion worker has criticised the BBC for allowing its presenters to wear remembrance poppies well before fundraising gets underway.
Over the weekend, BBC presenters such as Clare Balding, Colin Murray and Andrew Marr were seen sporting poppies, despite charity collections not starting until later this week.
The British Legion said that it has written to the corporation to remind it that its annual campaign has not yet officially launched.
Sue Cornwell, who coordinates poppy sales for the Legion's Amersham branch, told The Independent that the early publicity is confusing for the public.
"There is a strict date when you can buy a poppy and make your donation, and it has to be from October 30. There is only a two-week open period when we can collect starting then, because we're a charity," she said.
"I think it causes ill feeling among the people who go house to house selling the poppies if people are recycling them and wearing them already."
The poppy appeal raised a record £35 million for the British Legion in 2009, but organisers hope to beat that figure this year.
ITV and Channel 4 News presenters intend to start wearing poppies on October 28, when the national appeal is launched. Sky News presenters will follow on Saturday.
A BBC spokesman said that it is "down to the individual presenter" to decide whether they want to wear a poppy or not, as well as when they put it on.
A British Legion spokesperson said: "What we do say to people is that when you receive your poppies - organisations, retailers, whoever - we set guidelines and say the national launch will be from October 28. You can put them out from then.
"But it's really down to the individual as to when they choose to wear their poppy. We would never say they're wearing their poppy too early."
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