Remembrance Day: Bexhill church crafts poppies to mark end of First World War

A church community is marking the 100th anniversary of the end of the First World War by crafting a poppy for every Bexhill service personnel killed in military action.

Earlier this year, following the rediscovery of a beautifully illuminated roll of those from the now defunct Belle Hill Chapel who were off to fight in the First World War, a suggestion was made at Christchurch Methodist Church that a display of poppies be made to commemorate this weekend’s 100th anniversary.

Poppies at Christchurch Methodist Church, Bexhill

Poppies at Christchurch Methodist Church, Bexhill

The idea snowballed and volunteers carried out some research to ascertain the number of Bexhill service personnel killed in the First and Second World Wars, and since, fighting for their country.

READ MORE: Remembrance Day 2018: How 1066 Country is honouring centenary of First World War

The number of 473 seemed a daunting task, but the knitted, felt and recycled bottle poppies soon started to roll in.

The total was soon met and overtaken, and as so many of the congregation joined in producing them, that as well as the display now seen outside the church on Holliers Hill, the Lenten cross will also be covered in poppies for the service on Sunday, November 11.

READ MORE: Roll of Honour of those killed in the First World War from Bexhill, Rye, Battle and the villages of Rother, East Sussex

A spokesperson for Christchurch said: “The display has been much admired by passers by and many photos taken.

“We are so proud to have been able to commemorate the fallen of Bexhill in this way.

“It has brought the Christchurch community together in the making of it.”

The Remembrance weekend begins on Saturday with a commemoration in words, letters and the singing together of World War I songs in the hall at 2.30pm.

This will be followed by WWI cakes and tea. Admission is free, but donations to the Royal British Legion will be welcomed.

The Service of Remembrance on Sunday will be led by Rev Tricia Williams.

There will be a link by radio to the Cenotaph at 11am to mark the two-minute silence.

The service will conclude with Holy Communion for those who wish to stay.

READ MORE: World War 1 Centenary: Moving poppy tribute at Westfield