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504 Rushcliffe World War One heroes remembered in huge poppy art exhibition

26 October 2018

Thousands of handmade remembrance poppies are on display in a huge art exhibition to commemorate each of the 504 residents from Rushcliffe towns and villages who were lost in World War One.

The cascade of flowers made by schools, community groups and individuals from the Borough now adorns the atrium staircase at Rushcliffe Arena in West Bridgford viewed by hundreds of people passing by into its leisure centre each day.

Rushcliffe Borough Council made the appeal to residents and community groups to donate the poppies that are made from wool, felt, paper, card and clay.

The installation was inspired by the Tower of London’s famous ‘Blood Swept Sands and Seas of Red’ installation and will now be in place until November 16 in conjunction with an adjacent roll of honour featuring the names of the 504 who died.

Rushcliffe Mayor Cllr Mrs Maureen Stockwood visited the display with pupils from local schools who helped create the poppies.

Madam Mayor said: “This display is a very thoughtful and creative tribute to the Rushcliffe residents that perished during The Great War and whose lives were tragically lost.

“We would like to thank all of the school children, residents and local groups that sent their poppies to feature in the display, as without them, we could not commemorate the fallen in this way.”

Local schools and groups that contributed included Radcliffe-on-Trent Junior School, where every pupil made a poppy, Jesse Gray Primary School, Rushcliffe School, St Edmund Campion Voluntary Academy, Lady Bay Primary School’s B Creative after school club and Second Lady Bay Brownies.

Local artist Belinda Poon from West Bridgford, who created the exhibition said: “The amount of poppies we have received is astounding, with so many imaginative local residents of all ages sending creations in a wide variety of materials and sizes.

“It's amazed me how many different poppy designs have been created. Due to the huge variety we were able to create display boards to share the drawings, poetry and models made by the community.

“Many people understand the impact that the War had on our country. Having the opportunity to create a handmade poppy for a display here at the arena has given people in the Borough a huge sense of community spirit.

“The display really does highlight our local talent who have made a fitting tribute to the residents we lost in World War One. Thanks too to the Borough Council for promoting arts and encouraging creativity."

For more information about the project and on Commemorative community events across Rushcliffe visit www.rushcliffe.gov.uk/ww1centenary