Remembering the Fallen – Ludlow WW1 Poppies

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Loudwater is thrilled to announce that they have secured funding from the National Lottery Awards for All programme which will see them create a series of poppy based activities in and around Ludlow this year to commemorate the 143 local lives lost in the Great War.

With this year being the centenary of the end of World War One, the Studio wanted to find a way to commemorate those lost, and following a conversation with Ludlow Youth Club and the Chair of Ludlow in Bloom, the idea started taking shape.

We received a request to organise some activities with the children of the town that would link to WWI in some way, and the creation of ceramic poppies was mentioned.  Being up for the challenge, and thinking it a great idea, we set about working out just how these poppies could be made.  We’ve since developed our own poppy template for people to use, thus making something that may seem very daunting to some, an extremely easy process, and we’ve had great success so far.

We started the project by a launch at the Youth Partnership where we guided members of the Youth Club on how to make the poppies; followed by a workshop during the February school holiday which saw us welcome a full studio of children to make poppies; one for the community project, and one for their own homes.  Since then we’ve had poppies made by those cared for by vulnerable adults and their support staff; Youth Partnership members; the Scouts and Guides and members of Marie’s Craft Group to name but a few .  Everyone who has made a poppy for the project has also been given the opportunity to make one for home, so we know there will be a garden trend for poppies this year in Ludlow as well as our display.  It has been great to see so much enthusiasm and desire to be involved, this has really brought the community together.

All made by hand each of the ceramic poppies will be unique and will form part of the Ludlow in Bloom displays for this year, initially being placed at St. Laurence’s church from 2 July before being moved to the safety of the Library on 2 August, before their return to St. Laurence’s for Remembrance Day.

With the poppies moving to the Library we wanted to make a display to compliment them in their new setting and our amazing Knit and Natter group have been beavering away knitting and crocheting 286 poppies which has been great, but we wanted to do more!

Securing the funding from the National Lottery has allowed us to fulfil this wish and expand the project even further.  The funding not only means that we can fund all the ceramic poppies for the community project without having to ask for a contribution,  which simply makes things easier to access for all but has also allowed us to plan workshops with 3 local schools who will be making banners to be hung in Ludlow Library, joining these will be a ‘fallen leaf’ display created by Loudwater’s very own sewing bee group where the names of every soldier who lost their life have been embroidered and more information about them can be found.  This display can be found in the Library from 3 August where it will remain until 23 October when it is hoped a small ceremony will be held and the poppies then processed back to be planted at St. Laurence’s by the children involved in making the banners, and welcomed back with a Civic reception courtesy of the Town Council.

The poppies will then remain at St. Laurence’s and line the pathway into the church for those taking part in the Remembrance Day Parade.  But we’re not finished yet! After all the hard work and enthusiasm that’s gone into making the ceramic poppies we didn’t want to simply discard them at the end of the project.  So we made the decision that we wanted to help raise funds for a forces charity.  As we wanted to keep things local we did some research and found that Ludlow had it’s very own branch of the Royal British Legion who were thrilled that we’d thought of them.  So if you would like to own one of the poppies then this is your chance.  Orders can be placed for the poppies now, but please bear in mind that you will not be able to collect you poppy until 13 November when the poppies have all been retrieved from St. Laurence’s and given a bit of a polish.

This is such an exciting project and it has been so wonderful that so many members of the local community have wanted to be involved, we are thrilled to be part of it.  However we wouldn’t have been able to get this far without the support of our local Community Enablement Officer, Linda Monteith who has supported us all the way.  Not only helping to pull all the different partners together, but also supporting us at workshops, and getting fully involved in helping to make the poppies, her work so far on the project has been invaluable and we can’t thank her enough for her help.

It’s likely that demand for the poppies will be high so if you’d like to buy a poppy please either contact us at the Studio on (01584) 822727 or follow this link and we’ll see you in November.