New poppy meadows leave lasting legacy in Littlehampton

Children, councillors, Arun contractors and Royal British Legion members plant the first seeds          L15T1H14
Children, councillors, Arun contractors and Royal British Legion members plant the first seeds L15T1H14

THE seeds of remembrance have been sown in Littlehampton.

As the nation this year looks towards commemorating the centenary since the outbreak of the first world war, toddlers, schoolchildren, councillors and members of the Royal British Legion kick-started the remembrance period by planting two new poppy meadows near the town’s war memorial.

On Wednesday, children from the River Breach Primary School and the Ticklemetoo nursery group planted thousands of poppy seeds in two new flower beds, designed to look like the iconic poppy.

The two meadows, in Caffyns Field, will be a lasting legacy for the town and for those killed not just in the first world war but every conflict Britain has been a part of since then.

It was organised by Arun District Council contractors ISS in conjunction with East Preston’s branch of the Royal British Legion and it is hoped that the meadows will come into bloom by June.

Arun District Council representative for Beach ward Dr James Walsh – who served in the Royal Navy as a medical officer and later as a reservist for 20 years – attended the planting.

He said: “It’s wonderful to have these children taking a real interest in the centenary.

“Planting meadows like this, using poppies, is a particularly evocative way of doing it and it will be a lasting legacy behind the town’s war memorial.”

The two meadows have been designed to look like a Flanders poppy.

They have been seeded with a total of 280,000 poppy seeds.

The meadow is made up of a central section comprised of poppies and other red flowering plants.

The four ‘petals’ on the outside of the design will be made entirely of poppies while the seed in the middle will be made up of black mondo grass.

It is hoped the meadows will grow up to a height of just under a metre.

Terry Shanley, treasurer of the East Preston wing of the Royal British Legion, said: “This year is a big one for us. We wanted to create something special to commemorate the centenary. I’m sure once the two meadows are in bloom it will look stunning.”

A second meadow in Mewsbrook Park was also planted.