Thousands of yarn poppies go on display for Remembrance at three Ramsgate sites

Carl Whitewood from Ramsgate Salvation Army and Crafty Poppies members with the display Photo Brian Whitehead

Photos by Brian Whitehead

Thousands of knitted and crocheted poppies have gone on display at three sites in Ramsgate.

Members of the town’s Crafty Poppies group have been busily crafting to complete the Remembrance displays at the Destiny statue in Albion Place Gardens, St George’s Church Gates in Church Hill and, for the first time, outside the Ramsgate Salvation Army premises at the top end of the High Street with a display which incorporates 2000 poppies.

Photo Brian Whitehead

Crafty Poppies was founded by resident Jo Hanchett and formed in 2017 with the aim of making the poppy display that year to remember those brave men and women who died in World War One.

The first display was on the railings of Albion Place where a young boy had been killed in April 1942.  This was just a few red Poppies.  By August of that year the group began making Purple Poppies to commemorate the animals who had been killed during the wars.

In November 2018 Crafty Poppies were ready for their first major display and filled the railings around Destiny in Albion Gardens with over 1,000. Red Poppies.

In November 2019 they displayed their most dramatic fall of red Poppies hanging down the Pulhamite of the waterfall to commemorate the fallen of the wars.

Photo Brian Whitehead

And this year a growing membership and support has enabled the new display site at the Salvation Army building and a total of around 5,000 poppies across the three displays.

Crafty Poppies member Maxine Morgan said: “This year was the first year that we have displayed our works at the Salvation Army. This has been a dream of ours for the last year.

“I put a post on Facebook and sent to a number of people that I know knit and crochet. We put the word out at the Salvation Army and we were inundated. This display includes just over 2000 poppies.

Photo Brian Whitehead

“We met at each other’s houses for six or seven sessions sewing the Poppies onto the plastic netting. We’ve been honoured to have new members and they have not just participated in making the Poppies but also in sewing these beautiful panels. It’s been great to meet new people sit and chat over a cup of tea cake and biscuits, making new friends and feeling and a real sense of community.

Photo Brian Whitehead

“For those that couldn’t make it for the sewing sessions they still dropped off Poppies on my doorstep. For at least three weeks I would come home every day to find a goodie bag of poppies waiting for me.

Photo Brian Whitehead

“The wonderful thing about people making them at home is they use different patterns with different reds, different techniques and different embellishments so every poppy is individual which can be seen in these truly amazing displays.”

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Founder member Jo added: “For the Salvation Army display Mayor Raushan generously gave money to fund the yarn. Wonderful people, new and regular members of the group, have crocheted and knitted Poppies for us and given up their time to affix the Poppies to the panels.

“Thank you to RTC for their help in putting up the display at St George’s Church, the Town Memorial, and our lovely ladies who were at Destiny the War Memorial putting those Poppies up. We must also praise Brian Whitehead for his beautiful photographs.”

Photo Brian Whitehead

The group has issued “a big thank you” to all those who participated, Ramsgate mayor Raushan Ara who donated £50 for yarn and netting and the town council operatives who helped hang the display at St George’s Church.

A new project is being planned by the Crafty Poppies group for the Salvation Army next Easter.

Thanet Remembrance Services 2022


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