SUPPORT for the campaign to raise a statue of a Newport boxing hero has spread to the other side of the world.

Soldiers from the Royal Bermuda Regiment, who are now working on relief efforts in the wake of Hurricane Irma, have backed the campaign to honour Newport fighter David Pearce after meeting the boxer's nephew and campaigner Luke Pearce.

Luke, who is an officer in the Royal Air Force, met the soldiers from the British Caribbean territory recently while they were being given parachute training in the Netherlands.

He presented them with a portrait of the boxer which they have taken back to their headquarters at Warwick Camp on the island. Luke has already given 22 paintings of David Pearce to notable places across Newport, including the Transporter Bridge visitor centre, Rodney Parade and the Civic Centre.

The original number of 22 copies of the painting was chosen because that was the number of professional fights David had.

The fundraising campaign is well on its way to reaching its target of £35,000 after recent events. A sleep-out in Belle Vue Park raised £2,500 while the Malpas Unionist Club raised £400 with a music night and the Dodger pub in Newport donated £50 and plan to raise more.