Sunderland florist creates wreath for London Remembrance commemorations

Gulf War veteran David Morrison with the manager of Grangetown Florists on Chester Road, Joanne Kerr and the wreath he will be laying at the Cenotaph in London.

Gulf War veteran David Morrison with the manager of Grangetown Florists on Chester Road, Joanne Kerr and the wreath he will be laying at the Cenotaph in London.

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A WREATH created by a Sunderland florist will take pride of place on the steps of a war memorial in London.

Joanne Kerr, from Grangetown Florists, in Chester Road, was tasked with the special order by Gulf War veteran David Morrison.

The 46-year-old of the 3rd battalion of the Royal Regiment Fusiliers will be part of the capital’s national Remembrance Service parade paying tribute to the country’s war dead tomorrow.

He will be laying a wreath on behalf of the National Gulf Veterans and families association of which he has been a member for the past 15 years at the Cenotaph in Whitehall.

The charity provides help and support to veterans of desert conflicts and their families through information, advocacy and counselling.

Mr Morrison, who served in the first Gulf War conflict, chose the florist after moving to Sunderland from Warrington six months ago.

He said: “Every year we also have a wreath made from our home towns. Now, with me living in Sunderland, it was only right for me to have one made by a florist in Sunderland.

“I spoke to the manager Joanne at the shop and told her what it was for and what we wanted and they have done a fantastic job.

“I am really pleased with the finished product. They really have done a sterling job. I’ve told them to watch out for the march on the TV as I’m sure it will be picked up.”

Mr Morrison has travelled to London each year for the parade, however, this time will be the first time he will lay a wreath on behalf of the charity. He added: “I can’t remember a time when I wasn’t at the Cenotaph in London, but this is the first time I will be laying a wreath on behalf of the charity.

“It is quite a big honour to do this, the wreath will be laid next to ones placed by members of the Royal Family and the Prime Minister.”

Joanne Kerr, who has owned the florist for 22 years, said: “This is the first time someone has asked me to do a wreath to be placed at the Cenotaph in London.

“I’ve done small poppy wreaths for people before, but this was something else. I just felt honoured he came to us and I have been able to do this for him. It was quite nerve-wracking making it. I am so pleased he is happy with it and I’ll be watching the parade on the television on Sunday to see if I can see it.”