TWO Romsey landmarks are set to be lit in purple to mark World Polio Day.

Romsey Abbey and the Plaza Theatre will be floodlit in the colour from October 21 and October 27 to celebrate the man who produced the first vaccine against polio.

World Polio Day falls on October 24 and will mark Jonas Salk's birthday. He invented the vaccine in the 1950s.

The disease, also known as infantile paralysis, once killed and crippled hundred of thousands of people worldwide.

The last case in the UK was in 1984 and the vaccination soon eliminated the disease from developed countries, however it persisted in Africa and Asia.

Now the Rotary Clubs in Romsey have teamed with Sir Harold Hillier Gardens, Jermyns Lane, to plant purple crocuses in celebration of the efforts to rid the world of the disease.

For the last 30 years, Rotary International has partly funded the “End Polio Now” campaign where teams have been sent out to vaccinate children and to eliminate polio from the few remaining pockets mostly in Afghanistan, Pakistan and West Africa.

After each child is vaccinated their finger is dipped in purple dye to ensure they do not get two doses.

Last year there were only 100 cases worldwide.