Hundreds of knitted poppies have sprung up in the town centre and around Oldham Parish Church thanks to talented volunteers.

Back in August, Marlene Armitage, Church Warden at Oldham Parish Church, put out a plea asking local community groups and organisations to help her create her own version of the Road of Remembrance, inspired by one she saw on an earlier visit to Folkstone.

Marlene originally aimed to collect 400 poppies.

In order to make sure she was able to use the Church’s railings and surrounding area to display the poppies, she contacted Oldham Council.

The council approved Marlene’s plans but they also wanted to know more about how they might help bump up the number of poppies.

Fast forward a couple of months and in total the council has managed to deliver more than 900 knitted poppies to Marlene.

Staff from the lifelong learning service, school governors, libraries, schools, safeguarding, adult social care, fleet management, constitutional services and friends and families of the council and its partners all took part. There was even a specific session set up by the council’s volunteer knit and natter group for the cause.

The council’s collection of poppies have been added to Marlene’s booming collection of 1,500 which have been donated by residents and community groups – a number which has far surpassed her original expectations.

Marlene Armitage, Church Warden at Oldham Parish Church, said: “I am overwhelmed by the support I have received from everyone. It is really and truly superb.

“We are delighted the local authority got involved, they really have worked their socks off.”

Councillor Zahid Chauhan, Cabinet Member for Health and Social Care, said: “This magnificent display of poppies is a great way to commemorate those lost in conflict.

“I’m really proud that council staff and our partners have got on board with this and I for one can’t wait to see it.

“It is a great example of community spirit.”

The poppies are on display now.


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