More than 100 poppies knitted to start First World War project

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KNITTING enthusiasts spent the afternoon making bright red poppies as part of a First World War project.

More than 100 poppies were made in the first of four workshops which proved so popular that two extra had to be added to the calendar.

Gael Freathy, left, and Mary Dunning knit poppies at The National Museum of the Royal Navy in Portsmouth. ''Picture: Allan Hutchings (142738-836)

Gael Freathy, left, and Mary Dunning knit poppies at The National Museum of the Royal Navy in Portsmouth. ''Picture: Allan Hutchings (142738-836)

Around 25 people went to the National Museum of the Royal Navy, at Portsmouth’s Historic Dockyard, to knit the poppies which will create crests of lost ships and submarines from the First World War.

And Dan Ball, community engagement officer at the museum, was impressed with the knitters’ enthusiasm.

He said: ‘The people who came along really understood what we were trying to do and showed real enthusiasm.

‘A lot of them were interested in the history of the lost ships and submarines and liked looking at the artefacts we had out specially for them.’

Over the new few weeks, the National Museum of the Royal Navy and the Royal Navy Submarine Museum, in Gosport, will be holding workshops for people to make more poppies.

The project marks the 100-year anniversary since the start of the First World War.

And the poppies will mark this anniversary by becoming four crests of lost ships.

Dan added: ‘We are well on our way to making enough poppies for the four crests of lost ships and submarines.

‘Around 120 were made yesterday and we have got another five workshops to go.

‘The people who came along worked really hard and the poppies were so intricate.

‘Everyone had the chance to follow patterns but some people did their own thing.

‘They were all very enthusiastic so it was an enjoyable afternoon.’

The teams at the museum had been inundated with poppies from people who have been making them outside the workshops.

Dan said: ‘People who want to send in poppies don’t have to come along to the museums. So we have had poppies sent in from people in Wales and Great Yarmouth.

‘Quite a few have come from the Isle of Wight too which is really nice to see.

‘Loads of people will have contributed to this project.’

Two extra workshops have been added which still have places to fill.

The first is on October 14, from 1.30pm until 4.30pm at the National Museum of the Royal Navy.

The second is October 21, from 1.30pm until 4.30pm, at the Royal Navy Submarine Museum, on Haslar Road.

Call (023) 9251 0354 to book.

The other dates previously reported in The News are now fully booked.