Pride of Britain Awards: Meet the South West finalists - Harry Billinge

  • Watch Claire Manning's report on Pride of Britain finalist Harry Billinge


Each year, ITV News regions across the UK search for a local Fundraiser of the Year as part of the national Daily Mirror Pride of Britain Awards.

The winners for 2020 from each ITV region will be celebrated in a star-studded primetime special on ITV in the autumn.

Here in the West Country, four finalists have now been selected from the many nominations we received for the South West of the region.


Harry Billinge

D-Day veteran Harry Billinge collecting for the cause in Par Market, St Austell in 2019. Credit: ITV West Country

D-Day veteran Harry Billinge made the headlines earlier in 2020 when he was awarded an MBE for his services to charitable funding.

In normal times, Harry is often seen out in St Austell collecting funds to see a national memorial built to honour his fallen comrades.

The sea was red with human blood and I have never been able to forget that and I am moved every day of my life. I so easily shed tears for all the poor devils that never came back.

Harry Billinge

For 64 years, Harry raised money for the Royal British Legion but, in 2018, he turned his support to The Normandy Memorial Trust. 

They have since established 'Harry's Army', which encourages people inspired by Harry to also fundraise.

Michael Traboulsi from The Normandy Memorial Trust says Harry has personally helped raise more than £50,000 for them. "But at the end of the day, if you ask him why he is fundraising for the British Normandy Memorial, he will tell you he is doing it for his mates."


Find out who won our region's Fundraiser of the Year award: