Knitted poppies for Armistice anniversary

Since February, "The Poppy Knitting Ladies" have been knitting and sewing thousands of poppies in preparation for Remembrance. Photo by Iain Cochrane.
Since February, "The Poppy Knitting Ladies" have been knitting and sewing thousands of poppies in preparation for Remembrance. Photo by Iain Cochrane.

A group of more than 20 women have been busy doing their bit to mark the upcoming centenary of the end of the First World War on November 11.

Since February, ‘The Poppy Knitting Ladies’ have been knitting and sewing thousands of poppies at the Lade Centre in Rothesay in preparation for Remembrance.

Phylis Ward explained how she started this tribute.

She said: “We are just a group of women that has been knitting poppies to make a display for Armistice Day on the 11th of November.

“The Lade is a drop-in centre in Rothesay for people with life limiting conditions and anyone really that is lonely, to drop-in for a chat.

“My daughter asked me to knit some poppies for a church where she lives in England. I thought ‘this will take forever’, so I put out an advert for help and there was a great take-up. And then someone said why don’t we do them for us here on Bute?

“We approached the Legion to see if they wanted this display and they took it up. I think they are quite happy.

“We have put the poppies on camouflage netting which will go around the war memorial in Rothesay. We are doing some extra for Port Bannatyne and Kingarth and one of the local churches wants to borrow one of our displays.”

Phylis explained more about those doing the knitting and the process so far.

She said: “They come from all over – from Greenock to down in England. We have maybe 20/30 people helping out, mostly local.

“I could maybe do two or three poppies in an hour. I reckon we have got 1500.

“It really ramped up after we started in February then it quietened down in the summer. I have just put out a message asking for some more as we are not quite there yet.

“We could call it finished now, but we just want to make it as good as possible.

“It’s important with it being the centenary of the armistice. I think that’s why so many people have got involved.

“It’s not something I tended to do, knitting. It’s just one of those things that has grown.

“I’m a volunteer in the Lade Centre and they have kindly given us a hall to work in. If anyone wants to donate knitted poppies, please hand them in to the Lade Centre on Wednesday afternoons.”