It really is incredible just how much Ripon is doing to mark the centenary of the end of the First World War, and this week it’s the knitted poppies that have moved readers beyond words.
Last week, the ‘Gazette ran a picture feature on Ripon’s breathtaking silhouette soldiers project, and this week it’s the turn of the city’s community poppy project.
An estimated 50,000 knitted poppies are going up around Ripon, lining the route from Ripon Spa Gardens to Ripon Cathedral for Remembrance this year, and the ones that are in place already have provoked an enormous response.
Reader Diane Thompson said: “The knitting and crochet work was done by many, many people, not as long a list as the fallen in the war, but each one, me included, thought of them as we created the poppies. It is a coming together of past, present and future, and it is so heart warming to see them all around our city. It’s a wonderful yet poignant celebration.”
Yvonne Hawkridge said: “Ripon is looking amazing with all the poppy displays. Everyone who made the poppies should be very proud. It is a very moving experience and one that Ripon can be proud of.”
Stuart Martin, who is coordinating the project with Hazel Barker, said: “The response to the poppies so far has been tremendous, people have been so, so supportive. People have been very moved by the displays.
“It’s been absolutely amazing to see Ripon coming together for this project, and we can’t say thank you enough to everybody who has taken part, made poppies or supported it in some way. This will make Ripon stand out and hopefully increase footfall to the city.”
The vast majority of the poppies will be in place by the end of October 21. The curtain of poppies at Ripon Cathedral and the displays outside Moors Care Centre, F. Lowley and Son, and F. Tate and Sons are among the ones that have already attracted a lot of attention, with residents and visitors stopping in their tracks to admire them.
The scale and profile of the poppy project continues to grow, and some poppies have been knitted and posted to Ripon from as far as Dubai, Turkey and America.
Businesses along the route from the Spa Gardens to the Cathedral have been invited to decorate their shop windows with poppies to show their support, and the response has already been overwhelming.
What has been your favourite display of poppies so far? Get in touch: Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01423 707505.
We will also be continuing to promote Ripon’s First World War centenary events over the coming weeks, and would love to hear from anyone who is doing a project to mark the occasion.