Church and community craft poppy cascade in Beckenham

First published on: 11th November 2022

Bright red knitted and crocheted poppies of different sizes hand on a brown sackcloth draped from a tree over the gated entrance into the church yard.

Over 1,000 hand-crafted poppies are cascading from the tree and Lychgate at St George's Church in Beckenham as part of an impressive installation to mark Remembrance.

People from the community, including many who come to the church's Monday craft group, have knitted, crocheted, and sewed the poppies.

The Reverend Beverley Ejimofo, who runs the church-based group says, it has been great to see the community come together: 

"It's a wonderful example of how we can bring those of faith and those who "apparently" have none together. I have found myself praying with people and offering support when needed."

The project was initiated by Heather from the church's Flower Team, who designed the layout and made the sacking background. She worked with Jim Hardy who is Captain of the Bell Tower.

As well as those making the poppies, a team of volunteers stitched them to the sacking, with one local volunteer stitching 420 poppies onto the display.

Mary Davis, Administrator and PCC Secretary, says the project has bought real joy to people:

"There has been a lot of laughter and a real will to get the installation completed. One of our regular visitors, who has advanced arthritis, kept saying how she would love to knit a poppy but didn’t think she could.

"She took home a ball of wool and a pattern and went home and knitted six. She was so thrilled that she had reconnected with a beloved hobby, the joy on her face was a sight to behold."

Also on display in the church are stories from the congregation about their experience of World War II as children of serving soldiers.

The shape of a saluting soldier made out of poppies, the Union flag and a collection of war memorabilia, adorn a table draped with poppies inside the church.

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