Donations of £600,000 made to Help for Heroes since murder of soldier

Drummer Lee Rigby was killed in a Woolwich street last Wednesday while wearing a T-shirt publicising the charity

Help for Heroes, the charity that supports wounded military personnel, has received more than £600,000 in donations and pledges since the murder of a serving soldier in London last week.

The charity has been inundated with calls, donations and requests for merchandise since Drummer Lee Rigby was attacked and killed in Woolwich last Wednesday while wearing a Help for Heroes T-shirt.

Its website crashed on Thursday because of the high level of activity.

A spokesman for the charity said that £600,000 had been raised by last Friday and added that even more money had been received since then, but he was unable to provide the up-to-date total.

People have been leaving donations and messages in memory of Rigby through the charity’s JustGiving page, which had a fundraising total of £19,828 as of 12pm today. Another JustGiving page, called "RIP – Woolwich Soldier", had raised £106,240 through 12,000 donations for the charity by the same time today.

But the charity said it had to work with JustGiving to close down a page that the English Defence League, a far-right protest group, had set up to donate money to Help for Heroes.

Bryn and Emma Parry, co-Founders of Help for Heroes, said in a statement: "Help for Heroes is a non-political organisation. We would like to make it clear that we will not accept donations from organisations that attempt to use Help for Heroes to promote their own political agenda.

 "Like everyone, we were shocked by the murder in Woolwich. Like everyone, we just want to help our wounded servicemen, women, veterans and their families. We hope that everyone who cares passionately about this important issue shows that support in a unified and dignified way."

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