Poppy seeds sent to all schools as part of First World War centenary

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Poppy seeds have been sent to every school in the UK to mark the centenary of the outbreak of the First World War.

Poppy seeds have been sent to every school in the UK to mark the centenary of the outbreak of the First World War.

The Royal British Legion initiative aims to help young people understand the impact of conflict. 

The project was launched last week in the garden of 10 Downing Street by prime minister David Cameron and pupils from the Cathedral School of St Saviour and St Mary Overie, a London primary school. 

The idea is that schools will plant the poppies in their grounds as a gesture of remembrance to commemorate the centenary.

The project has been funded by a £100,000 grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund and it  will also see 550 volunteer remembrance ambassadors trained to help youngsters understand the First World War.

Speaking at the launch, Mr Cameron said: “The First World War centenary programme is about recognition and remembrance, focusing particularly on young people and helping them make a connection with the events that changed the world a century ago.

“This poppy initiative is a great idea that will help the next generation understand the significance of what happened during the First World War and commemorate the sacrifice of those who died.”

Charles Byrne, director of fundraising at the Royal British Legion, added: “Remembrance and the poppy is an important part of British life and culture and this excellent initiative not only allows every school in the UK to participate in centenary commemorations but importantly passes the torch of remembrance on to a new generation.”

In addition to the packets of seeds, schools have received a booklet entitled Remembrance and the Poppy: Past, Present and Future, highlighting the poppy’s heritage, traditions and its relevance in today’s society.

The government is also funding every state secondary school to send two pupils and a teacher on a visit to the First World War battlefields over the next five years.

 


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