The three-month long Sky of Poppies art installation is coming to fruition as Queensgate Shopping Centre, with artist Charron Pugsley-Hill making the final plans for the grand reveal.
The opening ceremony on Wednesday (July 6) will take place at 10am starting with a welcome from Queensgate’s centre director Mark Broadhead, followed by a speech from Charron and poem from Keely Mills.
As a mark of respect for each of the 131 Peterborough soldiers that lost their lives at the Battle of the Somme, each name will be read out and displayed on the balcony above the Sky of Poppies installation.
Since the project started in March this year, individual felted poppies have been hand made by hundreds of volunteers, local schools and businesses. Now they will finally come together to create a stunning cascade of red felt from the ceilings of Queensgate in North Square and will be in place a week after the 100-year anniversary of the start of the Battle of the Somme, which began on July 1.
Each single poppy represents 1,000 men from all sides that gave their lives. Charron said: “This has been an incredible journey from the very first poppy to the last. The amount of time, emotion and understanding that has gone into each poppy is a true show of respect for those soldiers.
“Wednesday 6 July will be a magnificent day and everyone is welcome to join us.”
Charron will be holding workshops after the launch to offer further understanding about the Sky of Poppies project and its particular significance in Peterborough.
Mr Broadhead said: “We have been with Charron all the way through this journey and have seen the passion behind Sky of Poppies and what it means to the people of Peterborough. To finally see the installation come to life will be quite spectacular.”
The Sky of Poppies installation will remain in Queensgate Shopping Centre until November 18 – the historic end of the Battle of the Somme.