Thursday, October 16, 2014

The Tower of London Remembers

Earlier in the year, we had heard about the poppy display at the Tower of London, so I was thrilled we would be there to see it in person.

It was absolutely breathtaking. By the time the display is completed on November 11, there will be 888,246 poppies, one for every British fatality in World War I.

The ceramic poppies go around the Tower and seem to hover above the ground...

They are placed on metal stakes and pushed into the ground, so they look like they are floating. The Weeping Window on the side of the Tower will be one of the last parts of the display to be dismantled.

The display has attracted crowds of people each day...

The Tower of London site was also used for recruitment and training of the troops in World War I.

A closer look at the poppies...

We were told that they are the Canadian poppies because they have six petals. The poppies almost looked like they had little tea lights inside. I wondered if they were lit at night, so we made a plan to go back and see them one evening.

At the Tower of London...

The Tower Bridge in the background...

21,688 volunteers made this display possible. The display would continue to grow until the last poppy was placed on November 11. After that, the poppies will be sold with the proceeds going to charity.

Volunteers in a field of poppies...

Roses were still in bloom in late October...

Several  nights later we went back to see if the poppies are lit at night...

The answer is no...but still stunning.

Every evening while the poppies are on display, the Last Post is played at sunset. Members of the Commonwealth forces who were killed in World War I could be nominated to have their name read out in this nightly ceremony. Darn! I didn't know this until we got back home.

What a fabulous way to commemorate the 100th Anniversary of World War I. May we all remember...

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