EWAN McGregor, James Blunt and Ozzy Osbourne are among the big names backing the Big Salute, the military's own version of Comic Relief's Red Nose Day, which will run from May 4-11.

A new annual fundraiser on BFBS TV and radio, the Big Salute is designed to encourage British Forces communities around the globe to raise money for five nominated service charities.

BFBS radio and television entertain troops overseas but Big Salute organisers are very keen to encourage UK forces to get involved.

A special Big Salute launch show will be streamed live on the web from 6.45pm on Sunday so supporters here can watch and take part.

Broadcasts will continue for the rest of the week on BFPS Radio, and can be heard on Sky Guide 0211 or online.

The five charities to benefit will be BLESMA (The British Limbless Ex-Service Men's Association), Combat Stress, Headley Court, Veterans Aid and St Dunstan's.

BFBS television controller, Helen Williams,said: "We want to encourage all members of the British Forces community to join in with our campaign.

"Normally, those back in the UK miss out on BFBS Radio and TV events - that's why we're streaming the TV show live on the BFBS website and urging everyone in the UK who wants to "salute" our Forces to watch, join and listen to BFBS Radio for charity auctions and so on."

For more information on the Big Salute and to watch the streamed launch, visit www.bfbs.com/big salute.