How Ilkeston park will be transformed for Remembrance Sunday

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A remembrance display featuring thousands of knitted poppies will transform Ilkeston’s Victoria Park into a moving memorial to mark the centenary of the end of the First World War.

Organised by the Friends of Victoria Park, the ‘Poppy Project’ has seen volunteers from across the world knit poppies that will be displayed in a memorial trail through the park at a family remembrance event on Saturday, October 27.

Friends group members have been overwhelmed by the support of residents for the project, while knitted flowers for the display have also arrived from countries including Italy, Spain and Australia.

The family event will raise money for the Royal British Legion, with people able to buy the display poppies – while poppy badges will also be on sale.

Members of the Royal British Legion Ilkeston Branch will be at the event along with cadets.

Councillor Mike Wallis, Erewash Borough Council’s lead member for culture and leisure, said this week: “This has been such a heart-warming project that has caught the imagination of the whole borough – and further afield as well.

“People young and old have so willingly given their time to knit remembrance poppies and our thanks go to them and to all involved in organising this event.

“It will be an emotional sight – a sea of poppies as part of our remembrance events here in Erewash in this special year.

“Go along to witness this display, it will be something that will stay in all our memories.”

Ahead of the event on 27 October 27, between 10am-3pm, 364 of the knitted red poppies – and one white poppy to symbolise peace – are currently on display in the gardens of Erewash Museum in Ilkeston.

Rachael Spence, of the Friends of Victoria Park, said: “The willingness of people to take part has been staggering, all of them united by their desire to support such a worthwhile cause.

“I can’t wait to see the final display, it will be a fantastic showcase.”

Residents can find out more about the project by visiting the Facebook page /Victoria Park Poppy Project Ilkeston.