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Blooms away as dambusters pilot triggers Kirkby poppy downpour

The Regent, in Kirkby-in-Ashfield, provided the location for the centre-piece of the town’s World War I centenary celebrations.

More than 9,000 cascading poppies, entitled the Kirkby Poppy Downpour, are being displayed at the pub.

The coat of red poppies was draped on the front of the pub to mark 100 years since World War I ended.

Local members of the Royal British Legion, Merchant Navy and numerous local people involved in the Kirkby poppy project, attended the unveiling ceremony.

The knitting and crocheting of the poppies began in April, at the Artful Buttoner shop, led by Claire Lilley, working with the Kirkby Craft Bombers, who delivered workshops and gave out patterns, so that the whole community could become involved.

Annesley Primary School created more than 1,000 poppies towards the project.

The initiative was a real partnership community project, involving numerous groups and individuals, including The Regent, which supported the display and provided refreshments and a venue for the official unveiling event.

Pub manager Rachel Sellars said: “The Kirkby project has provided an emotional community tribute, as part of the centenary celebrations.

“It is credit to Claire Lilley of the Artful Buttoner and the Kirkby Craft Bombers, in particular, who have worked tirelessly over the last six months to make it happen.

“We were thrilled to be the focal point for the display and honoured to host the celebrations and pay our respects to all who served during World War I.”