Video/Gallery: Suffolk launches 2013 Poppy Appeal with parade in Woodbridge

A parade marched through the streets of Woodbridge to mark the launch of this year's poppy appeal.

A parade marched through the streets of Woodbridge to mark the launch of this year's poppy appeal. - Credit: Archant

This year’s Poppy Appeal has been officially launched across Suffolk as the nation prepares to remember those who have lost their lives for their country over the last century.

And this year’s campaign is set to have added poignancy – it is the last before the start of four years of commemorations across the country to mark the First World War.

In Ipswich the campaign was launched with a short ceremony on the steps of the Town Hall led by mayor Hamil Clarke before members of the Royal British Legion processed to the Tower Ramparts shopping centre where a temporary shop has been opened selling poppies and other fundraising items.

Last year the poppy appeal raised £55,000 in Ipswich – during his introduction to the campaign Mr Clarke said he hoped the town could better that this year.

There were also poppy appeal launches in Woodbridge and Felixstowe as the county prepares for Remembrance Sunday in two weeks’ time.

As this year’s campaign gets under way, there are already plans underway for a series of events to mark the four years of the Great War.

The government is co-ordinating national events, but local authorities and organisations across the area are preparing for their own commemorations.

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A preparatory meeting has already been held in Ipswich looking at major events to be remembered over the next four years, and both the county council and districts and boroughs across Suffolk are preparing for their own events.

We are preparing special supplements and reprints of selected articles to mark the centenary of the conflict.

But for the next fortnight, attention will be focussed on this year’s poppy campaign, which is now in full operation across the country.

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