A GROUP of more than 100 enthusiastic knitters have been creating poppies to display at a memorial centre next month.

Margaret Hunter, 72, of The Wick, in Wickford, was inspired after appreciating last year’s creative poppy memorial at Holy Trinity Church, in Rayleigh, which was made up of 12,000 hand-made poppies.

Halstead Gazette:

Poppy-tastic - some of the poppies so far and the donation box

She told the Echo: “I’m part of the Women of Wickford group on Facebook and some of the women on there were saying wouldn’t it be nice if we could do something like that here in Wickford.

“I am keen crocheter and knitter, and had already made a crochet poppy before and still had the pattern, so I posted it up.

“There was so much interest that I started up another Facebook group called Wickford Poppies, with the idea that anyone who wanted to get involved making poppies could get the pattern from me which I had posted in the group, or a paper copy from Wickford Library, with the idea of encouraging them to donate to The Royal British Legion.”

Margaret has since managed to collect 2,000 poppies and is still going.

Sutton Furniture at Wickford high street kindly agreed to display a Wickford Poppies collection box for people to drop their poppies off.

Margaret has now begun to hold sewing days to make a start on sewing the poppies onto the net which she plans to drape over a beacon basket at the memorial park, in Runwell Road, in Wickford on November 9 at 9am.

Margaret, who is retired, added: “It’s amazing, the strength of community spirit.

“I never imagined this would take off anything like it has

“Whenever I’ve asked for help, like asking the community centre, asking Sutton Furniture, they’ve always happily said yes, I haven’t had any rejection.

“The display will have a message to say who it’s been made by and why and to encourage people to donate to The Royal British Legion.

“I’ve never done anything like this before, I’m quite an independent person so I’m not used to asking for help so to get all this amazing support has just been wonderful.”

Visit www.facebook.com/groups/2450478981686153 to join Wickford Poppies.