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Royal Seal of Approval for Art Installation

Monday 18th September 2017

A POP up art installation is being created at this year’s Kendal Wool Gathering with poppies made of yarn has received a royal seal of approval.

Prince Charles gave a one-word endorsement to the project, designed to raise money for the Royal British Legion annual appeal which helps care for Armed Forces and their families.

The heir to the throne visited the Kendal Wool Gathering stall in the rural arts marquee at Westmorland County Show on Thursday, September 14.

He was handed a crocheted poppy by its maker Marion Minshall who the idea behind explained the project, to which His Royal Highness said: “Fantastic.”

Still clutching his poppy he went on to talk to Carole Bowman, secretary of the Lancs and Lakes Guild of Weavers, Spinners and Dyers, who was spinning wool on the stand.

He asked her about her involvement in the traditional skills of weaving and spinning both of which practices at Farfield Mill, Sedbergh.

The Guild and Farfield Mill will both feature demonstrations at the Kendal Wool Gathering, being held for the first time this year at Kendal Leisure Centre, on October 28 and 29.

Local arts administrator Sara Last has been engaged to organise the display of the poppies outside Kendal Leisure Centre, the new home of the Gathering, over the weekend of October 28 and 29.

It will comprise a tent covered with camouflage material onto which the poppies will pinned.

The installation then will be moved to behind Kendal Parish Church to feature in the Remembrance Day services just two weeks later.

The success of the venture relies on volunteers joining in the mass production of the poppies. About 40 groups have already been recruited with Women’s Institutes, Brownie and Guide packs and church organisations being approached in the coming weeks.

A simple crocheting pattern has been devised by Mrs Minshall, of Kendal, who has been giving a series of demonstrations on how to make the poppies at K Village.

She will also be on hand to help those wanting to make the poppies at the Gathering. Packs of material to make two poppies will be available, one to keep and wear and one to add to the installation.

Other poppies are also being contributed from previous similar collections.

Kendal youth groups are to be approached to guard the installation at each of its sites.

After Remembrance weekend the poppies are being donated to Wonder Wools of Wales which has a target of 887,858 to represent each death of a UK service person in World War 1 with a Centenary textile curtain of Poppies.

Further information and how to get involved will be available at the Kendal Wool Gathering stall in the craft tent at the County Show on Thursday, September 14, and also on Facebook at www.facebook.com/KendalWoolGathering and www.facebook.com/groups/KendalPoppies

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