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Floral memorial for First World War heroes at Ipswich’s Quay Place to feature 2,018 poppies

Robyn Burgess with her poppy.  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Robyn Burgess with her poppy. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

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Thousands of handmade poppies are being knitted, sewn and crocheted at a Suffolk heritage centre to mark 100 years since the end of the First World War.

Handmade poppies at the launch of Quay Place's Poppy Project.  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNHandmade poppies at the launch of Quay Place's Poppy Project. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

School pupils joined volunteers for a poppy making session at Quay Place in Ipswich this morning as part of a centenary project commemorating those who lost their lives on the battlefield.

The aim is for 2,018 poppies to adorn walls at the centre, which operates out of the revamped St Mary at the Quay church, as part of a special display ready for Armistice Day in 2018.

Manager Ginny Idehen said: “This is part of our poppy project here at Quay Place and it’s all about celebrating the lives of the men of the parish, and of this church, who gave their lives in the First World War.

“We have a memorial here and we’ve been doing a lot of research around the men, where they came from and their families.

“Part of this research is also to involve as many people as possible in the process, so we’ve been making poppies and the poppies are part of a group that meets every Monday morning.

She added: “We’ve got a mere 2,018 to make because one of the volunteers decided to set that goal.

“It’s obviously the 100th year anniversary next year so we were really keen to get as many people involved as possible.”

Children from Stone Lodge Academy attended one of the centre’s weekly poppy making sessions this morning.

Rosie Bray and Ginny Idehen at the launch of the Poppy Project.   Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNRosie Bray and Ginny Idehen at the launch of the Poppy Project. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

One youngster was able to make six felt flowers within an hour.

Volunteer Rosie Bray lost her grandfather in the First World War.

She said: “It’s very important to remember (those who died) because it was so long ago and the majority of the people who were actually in the First World War are dead now.

“But it should be remembered by all of us because without the things that they did we may not be as we are now.

Handmade poppies at the launch of Quay Place's Poppy Project.  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNHandmade poppies at the launch of Quay Place's Poppy Project. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

“My grandad died trying to protect us all – he left two young boys.”

An exhibition commemorating parishioners who lost their lives during the war is currently on display at Quay Place.

It shares the story of Captain Nicholls, son of a Reverend based at St Mary at the Quay.

Mrs Idehen added: “It’s quite poignant because while (the Reverend) was putting a lot of his parishioner’s sons on the war memorial, he was also putting his own son on there.”

Visit Quay Place every Monday from 10am to take part.

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