POPPY makers in Ludlow and south Shropshire have played a part in a major exercise that will mark the centenary of the ending of the First World War.

Fibre fans from Shropshire have joined others from all over the UK in knitting and hand-making thousands of poppies for a massive, commemorative WW1 installation.

So far, 40,038 poppies have been sent in support of an appeal by Wonderwool Wales, the annual showcase of Welsh wool and natural fibres, which is being held at the Royal Welsh Showground, Builth Wells on Saturday and Sunday April 28 and 29.

In Ludlow, Sue Thornley is hoping that local groups can boost that total by at least 2,000 and she is well on the way, with 1,400 already made. She has encouraged two Knit and Natter groups, a U3A embroidery group, Ludlow Spinners and Myriad Spinning Group and other local knitters and crafters to get involved.

“I started with a target of 500, but we have raised that to 2,000 and who knows, we might beat that target, too,” she said.

“Not bad for a small community like Ludlow.”

Sue added that printed patterns are available from Poyners and the Wool Shops on Broad Street, Ludlow. Poyners are also acting as a central collection point for donated poppies up to March 31, the deadline for receipt.

Donated poppies, strung together into a ‘Curtain of Poppies’, will be displayed in Hall 3 at Wonderwool Wales, where The Royal British Legion will have a stand and collect donations.

The commemorative project, launched at the 2017 show, has encouraged today’s community of knitters to recreate the united determination of the women at home during World War 1, who “did their bit” to support the troops overseas by knitting gloves, scarves, balaclavas and socks.

After its launch at Wonderwool Wales, A Curtain of Poppies will become a travelling exhibition. See it at Powys County Council County Hall during May and the National Wool Museum of Wales from May 26 until the end of June. It will then be on display at the Gower Heritage Centre during July and August, the Newtown Textile Museum during September and next year (2019) it has been offered a permanent home at the Gower Heritage Centre.

Wonderwool Wales is inviting monetary donations in support of this project for the Royal British Legion. https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Wonderwool-Wales-Curtain-of-Poppies.