Poppies for Remembrance Day

This November there have been some wonderful displays on our war memorials that reminded my of a project I took part a couple of years ago – the plan had been to decorate the memorial in Old Eldon Square but after being inundated with knitted and crocheted poppies this stunning river of red was created on the grass and the trees were decorated too.

All over the country statues and cenotaphs, trees and railings have been festooned with handmade poppies in a trend that I think began in 2018, the centenary of the end of the First World War.

In nearby Warkworth the bridge railings are decorated.

Here in Shilbottle this village sign at Shilbottle Grange has been decorated by a talented lady named Brenda who lives close by. She’s incorporated purple poppies to represent the animals that died in service during conflict.

Photo D Sanderson

Also in the village we have a community garden known as Green Hut Corner, which includes memorials to the war dead and also those who died in mining accidents at the two former collieries here. In recent months the garden was decorated with thank you messages to the NHS heroes of the COVID pandemic. The hedge here provides a wonderful backdrop to this year’s poppy display.

This year the gatherings, services and parades have either been cancelled or reduced so that social distancing can be observed, so by adding these poppies to displays over the last week or so people have been paying their respects in their own beautiful way.

But there are other ways to mark Remembrance Day with poppies. My friend Cal Boal posted this on her Facebook Page (where you can see other examples of her work). Cal is a a very talented quilter and I’m sure you will agree that her Poppy Portal quilt is stunning.

Knit and Natter 6th November

Friday’s ZoomKnit and Natter at Alnwick Medical Group was as lively as usual and we were joined by a new member as well as a new member of staff.

Our existing members showed off what they’ve been working on over the last week – I carried on spinning alpaca fleece. I’ll not post any more pictured of that here but I will share some cropped screenshots from the session.

Last week one of the Alnwick members showed us the start of her knitted “Santa’s Washing Line”. She’s completed more of Santa’s laundry.

She also showed us this Christmas tree decoration knitted from a selection in this book illustration- she explained that the candy canes are held rigid with a bendy drinking straw.

Aren’t the colours in this crocheted blanket great? It looks really cosy. The maker of this explained that it is worked diagonally.

The co-ordinator of The Berwick Group (the two knit and natter groups have combined online) has been knitting head bands in various colours using a Fair Isle design. She intends to line these with fleece fabric to make them warmer to wear and stop the wind whistling between the stitches! I want one! – it would stop my hair blowing about too.


Our new member introduced herself – we are going to send her some patterns as she’d like to try some charity knits – something the group does a lot of. Unfortunately it’s harder to access the donated wool and needles from the surgery at the moment as we are in lockdown, but we gave her some ideas where to get some.

Jane, who co-ordinates the Alnwick group and is a new knitter has added to her first knitting project. She says the garter stitch is getting neater as she does more. Scarf length soon!

We also met Andrew, Jane’s colleague in the Social Prescribing Team. He can knit and was taught by his mother who made this lovely bobble hat.

All too soon our hour was up – another great catch up and some great projects. The group meets on Zoom every Friday at 12 noon for about an hour and is open to all patients of the Alnwick Medical Group – no social prescribing referral is necessary.