Anyone walking or driving through Wellington over the last few days cannot have missed the growing display of beautiful crocheted poppies that have appeared along the railings in the centre of the town. These have now spread to Lancer Court and are steadily climbing the tree and across the archway in wreaths.
The poppies are the work of Wellington Women’s Institute as their contribution to the town’s Remembrance events leading up to Remembrance Sunday on 11 November. They acknowledge and pay tribute to the sacrifice of all those in the various armed services whose lives have been lost in conflicts around the world.
The WI are making more poppies – both red and white – which will be displayed in Odette’s Tearoom in Wellington High Street. Each one can be ‘bought’ for £1 – 50p of which will go to The Royal British Legion and 50p to Wellington Monument restoration fund.
Before Remembrance Sunday all the poppies at Odette’s will be taken to decorate ‘Copenhagen’, the huge wooden horse which stands in Swain’s Lane in the garden created from a derelict patch of land by John McCarten who lives in Willcock’s Close. John named the horse after the Duke of Wellington’s which he rode at the Battle of Waterloo. John hopes Copenhagen will eventually find a permanent home either at the Monument or elsewhere in the town.
It is, perhaps, worth remembering that 8 million horses were killed in WW1 alongside countless mules. Copenhagen will be joining all those wearing a poppy on Remembrance Sunday by wearing a few himself.
This year has a special significance as it marks the 100th year since the signing of the Armistice brought an end to World War 1. The Royal British Legion poppies are available in various outlets in the town.