IT’S been quite a journey for Penarth’s Tina Selby since she set up her Hats4Heroes campaign in 2010.

The Grove Terrace resident has racked up TV appearances, radio interviews and magazine articles since she started the initiative for soldiers serving in Afghanistan, which has seen hats donated by knitters across south Wales - and from as far afield as Dubai and Barbados.

Prince Harry’s office at St James’s Palace even sent her a letter commending her work.

“The Prince was most interested to hear about your fantastic campaign and was touched by your kind and thoughtful gesture,” it read.

But she is now asking her knitting army to put down their needles – as she already has enough hats to cover next year’s consignment.

“I started this project in October 2010 with an initial aim of sending out 500 hats,” she said.

“We have now sent out 9542 hats - all with chocolate or sweets.

“It has now been announced that the deployment of troops will be substantially reduced next year,” she added.

“As a result I am asking the knitters to stop making hats for a while, as I have quite a few waiting for heads – just over 4000 at the last count - probably enough to cover next year's deployment as well.”

During 2010 and 2011 the hats were sent to Welsh Transport Regiment, 2nd Battalion Royal Welsh, Welsh Gunners, Royal Irish Regiment, 7th Parachute Regiment Royal Horse Artillery, 3rd Battalion Parachute Regiment, 20th Armoured Division, Queens Royal Hussars, 1 YORKS, 1 Princess of Wales Royal Regiment, 5 Rifles, 4 YORKS, Queens Dragoon Guards, 2 RIFLES and the Defence Medical Welfare Service.

In autumn 2012 she sent out 4884 hats to 1 Mercian, Yorkshire Transport Regiment, Queen’s Royal Lancers, 39 Regt RA, 40 Commando RM, Royal Military Police, 21 Engineer Regiment, Royal Dragoon Guards, Honourable Artillery Company, 1st Battalion Duke of Lancaster Regiment, ACF Hive, BRF and RAF Police FLS.

Tina said the project could never have grown as it did, were it not for the kindness of those who have knitted for her.

“I would like to thank the people of Penarth, Sully and Dinas Powys for their amazing support over the last few years with Hats4Heroes,” she said.

“The project could not have grown to the extent it has without your kindness.

“I would also like to thank Fourways and Snell's Newsagents for hosting collection boxes for donations of chocolates and sweets; and Sainsbury's Penarth for their help in the purchase of 3000 bars of chocolate!”

And she is still receiving letters and emails from soldiers in Afghanistan, both thanking her and requesting more hats.

Tina, who has featured on ITV's Daybreak and BBC’s Connie's People, received her last letter just before Christmas.

"They are in the middle of a war zone but they take the time to write a thank you," she added.

“They said they were freezing and barely able to write the letter, so I sent out some gloves as soon as I read it!”

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