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Ashford: North Park poppy display inspired by Tower of London installation appears

By Charlie Harman

A park is being transformed into an eye-catching field of poppies ahead of the Remembrance weekend.

Inspired by a popular installation at the Tower of London four years ago, the sturdy sculptures are being placed in North Park next to the Civic Centre in Ashford.

Scores of poppies have already been installed ahead of a service in the park on Sunday when more than 2,000 manufactured flowers will receive a military guard of honour overnight.

The eye-catching poppy display. Picture: Andy Clark
The eye-catching poppy display. Picture: Andy Clark

They will then start to be removed on Monday.

In advance of Sunday's event, residents are still being offered the opportunity to purchase the metal poppies for £6.

A minimum of £1.50 from each sale will go to the Kent branch of SSAFA - the armed forces charity.

Ashford Borough Council presented a cheque to the SSAFA today. Picture: Andy Clark
Ashford Borough Council presented a cheque to the SSAFA today. Picture: Andy Clark

The North Park service will begin at 5.45pm with The Band of The Princess of Wales' Royal Regiment, followed by poetry recitals and a light display synchronised to the band's performance.

The new civic beacon unveiled last month will be lit for the first time during Sunday's remembrance event at 7pm.

The giant metal torch features references to Ashford's railway heritage and a verse from Richard Lovelace's 1649 poem "To Lucasta Going to the Warres", from which Ashford Borough Council gets its motto "With stronger faith".

'Silent soldier' silhouettes will feature alongside the poppies during Sunday's remembrance service
'Silent soldier' silhouettes will feature alongside the poppies during Sunday's remembrance service

Tannery Lane will be closed to traffic from 5pm, with all access to parking at the Civic Centre and Stour Centre via Approach Road.

Parking will be free from 5pm.

For more information, visit www.ashford.gov.uk/ww1

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