Hospital needs your help to mark WW1 anniversary

Volunteer knitters and crocheters Nilda Scott, Shiela Christopher, Sue Beames, Jennifer Houghton and Mavis Ward with Jonathan Sewell

VOLUNTEERS have gathered together to support the Trust’s new Poppy Project.

Blackpool Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust hopes to receive at least 30,000 handmade poppies which will be used for an innovative art installation at the hospital to mark the 100th anniversary of the end of World War One next year.

Trust Lead Chaplain, Jonathan Sewell, is organising knitters and crocheters to come together, share tips, patterns and techniques with each other and this week held the first meeting with more than 30 staff and members of the public in attendance.

Jonathan said: “We just arranged this meeting to test the water and the response has been amazing – I’m astonished.

“It’s lovely to see the ladies mingling and making friends as well as swapping information.”

Jonathan will be also learning how to knit, courtesy of Mrs Johnson’s Emporium in Blackpool. This will be videoed and published on YouTube as a guide for others who may need help.

Following the art display next year, the poppies will be sold and money raised donated to The Royal British Legion.

Helen Mason, Royal British Legion Community Fundraiser, said: “We are very excited to be involved at the beginning of this project to remember those in WW1 and will rally our volunteers to get knitting.

“The money raised will help veterans from all conflicts and their families to live on.”

Knitter, Marlene Cordingley, who is part of the Dorcas knitting group in Anchorsholme, came to the meeting with other members of her group.

She said: “We are here today because our knitting group likes to try to do things to help others.

“The anniversary of the end of World War One next year means a lot as so many of our ancestors were affected. We have a lot to thank them for.”

If you are interested in joining in, you can email Jonathan direct at, or you can turn up at the next events where there will be instructors to teach both knitting and crochet:

The events will be in:

The Coffee Lounge, The Restaurant, Blackpool Victoria Hospital, every second Monday of the month, starting on September 11 and

The Garden Room, Clifton Hospital, Pershore Road, Lytham St Annes, every fourth Monday of the month, starting on September 25.

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