Hawkesbury community gathers to open Poppy Installation for Centenary of WWI Armistice

AN installation of more than 8,000 poppies has been launched in the Hawkesbury to commemorate the centenary of the Armistice that ended the First World War (1914-18).

Amid crowds of Hawkesbury residents, dignitaries, councillors and community representatives, Hawkesbury mayor Barry Calvert opened the installation that will be on long-term display in the atrium of the Deerubbin Centre in Windsor.

Cnr Calvert said the colourful installation looked “magnificent”, and said it was wonderful that so many people attended the opening on Friday, November 9.

“I would like to acknowledge the dedication of the many Hawkesbury crafters who have attended our monthly workshops since April to work on this beautiful installation,” he said.

“Congratulations to Hawkesbury Regional Museum, Hawkesbury Library Service and Hawkesbury Regional Gallery for the initiating and coordinating this special project.”

He said while the initial call-out was for locals to make 2,000 poppies, the installation grew to over 8,000 poppies by October “in an extraordinary effort from children to the older generations living in the Hawkesbury”.

“It’s a practical, but very meaningful thing to do, and for many people it’s also a way of honouring the women who not only knitted socks, but contributed to the war effort in so many ways,” Cnr Calvert said.

“You all deserve to be very proud of your combined efforts to commemorate the centenary of the World War One Armistice in such an outstanding way.

“It certainly shows what we can achieve when we work together.”

The knitted, felted and crocheted poppies are a symbol of remembrance and respect for those who have served in all wars, conflicts and peacekeeping operations, their families and their communities.

The colours of the poppies have special significance. The red poppies symbolise the Flanders Poppies, the white poppies symbolise peace, the purple poppies acknowledge the animals that died during the war, while the yellow poppies represent the Invictus Games.