Hopefully you will think this an apt post on Remembrance Sunday. The last week has been a little bit bonkers. Work has taken over with trips to London, then Paris and back in a day, followed by a firework display for 20,000 on Thursday and then on Friday some very, very special arrivals to Liverpool in the form of the poppies from the Tower of London. So work has been bonkers but I couldn’t be prouder than when I turned the corner of St George’s Hall as the last thousand or so were being attached. These will be open and housed at the hall until mid January for free so anyone who wants to see them, and pay their respects or just have a quiet moment, can. I blooming love my job, my team and what we do. Here is how I first saw them…
I saw the Poppies in London and was incredibly moved by them, so when I knew Liverpool was getting these ceramic beauties which hold so much poignancy I couldn’t quite believe it. While we don’t have all of them, we have the several thousand that make up the Weeping Window, no matter how far away or close to them you are they have a certain magic about them, they make you tingle in a highly emotive way. It’s quite haunting even though it is also mesmerizingly beautiful.
As many of you will know the Tower of London poppies were designed by artists Paul Cummins and Tom Piper to mark 100 years since the start of World War One, each of the 888,246 poppies placed over a period of time were installed to represent one of the deaths in the British and Colonial forces between 1914 and 1918. We now have the Weeping Window coming from the top of the columns of St Georges Hall (which is huge) where over 30,000 men had signed up to fight for their country by the end of 1914, more than 13,000 of whom lost their lives, so the building holds a real resonance to everything the poppies stand for.
This will be all the more poignant today when we hold the silence at 11am outside the building, as has been done for decades, with hundreds of people to remember everyone that fought for our country and for freedom before hundred of poppies are released from the roof. A fitting tribute.
For more info on the Poppies and the incredible programme around them head here. Don’t forget to pay your respects and hold the silence at 11am to remember all the incredible people from wars past to present who have fought, and are fighting, for freedom and a world free from tyranny in favour of hope, freedom and peace. We must not forget.