Yorkshire Times
A Voice of the North
Jan Harris
Assistant Group Editor
7:00 AM 7th November 2021

Why Poppies For Remembrance Day?

Photo by Diana Parkhouse on Unsplash
Photo by Diana Parkhouse on Unsplash
Have you ever wondered why the red poppy for Remembrance Day?

A Canadian doctor called Lt Col John McCrae in 1915 lost his friend Ypres. He wrote a poem which is now the famous poem 'In Flanders Fields' which was inspired by seeing lots of poppies growing in fields where the battles had been.

In Flanders Fields

The poem by John McCrae

In Flanders' fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place: and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders' fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe;
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high,
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders' Fields.

The poppy is:

Image by Uwe T. from Pixabay
Image by Uwe T. from Pixabay
A symbol of Remembrance and hope
Hope for a positive future and peaceful world
Worn by millions of people
Red because of the natural colour of field poppies
A delicate resilient flower that grows amidst chaos and destruction

Remembrance Day

Remembrance Day or Armistice Day is always observed on the 11 November each year because it was on that date in 1918 that the hostilities formally ended - 'at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month'.

This day has been observed ever since the end of the First World War to remember all the members of the armed forces who have died in the line of duty.

Photo by Michael Day
Photo by Michael Day
Remembrance Service at the Cenotaph

Every year on the Sunday following Remembrance Day there is a National Service of Remembrance held at the Cenotaph in Whitehall. This service is a reminder to the nation that all are remembered who have served and sacrificed for their country.

Recycle your poppy

All parts of the poppies can be recycled so after Armistice Day take them along to any Sainsbury's supermarket.

Some people choose to wear one of the enamel poppy pins which are available and then make a donation to the British Legion every year.

The Royal British Legion are committed to reduce the impact of single use plastic on the environment in the future.

Image by Kelvin Stuttard from Pixabay
Image by Kelvin Stuttard from Pixabay
So wear your poppy with pride this Armistice Day.

More information can be found here