I was fortunate enough to visit this memorial on 15 August 2014, and by the time you read this the memorial will be almost dismantled. It was never really intended to last after Remembrance Day, but by a surprising twist the memorial has proven to be a surprisingly popular one, and there have been calls to extend it beyond November 2014.
It is estimated that over 5 million people flocked to London to see the work, and images that I have seen after the last poppy was planted really brought it home to me how many lost their lives in that terrible war.
This work has really been the most effective war memorial that I have ever seen, although I am sure that the cemeteries in France are much more effective. The effect it did have was to show people just how many were lost in the First World War, and to bring those numbers back to Britain 100 years after the start of the conflict.
And now it is over, the poppies are being mailed to their new owners, and those who can exploit the memorial are doing so, although their sale on eBay has been blocked. There is even a school of thought that wants the memorial to continue for longer, but realistically that cannot happen. The short life of this work does make it very special, and for those of us who saw it, something to remember.
The artist, Paul Cummins, created a something that was unique, and something that has paid homage to the many brave men and women who never came home. And he has also placed the spotlight on the sacrifice of the many. I doubt if this work will ever be topped, it was just so very special which is why I am including it here.
© DRW2014 – 2018. Added to blog 23/11/2014.