Field of crosses to be planted in cathedral's Poppy Appeal garden
A living memorial has been created in honour of those who served for their country past and present.
The garden has been unveiled at Durham Cathedral and centres around its Boer War memorial, close to its entrance.
It was launched in tandem with the Royal British Legion’s Poppy Appeal, with visitors to the cathedral invited to place crosses in the ground in a show of respect in the lead up to Remembrance Day.
The poppy and the work of the Legion are often associated with the First and Second World Wars and elderly veterans, however the charity is this year calling on the public to reconsider what the poppy stands for and wear it in support of the Armed Forces community, past and present.
In the last year, the generosity of the public helped the charity answer more than one million requests for help.
It uses donations to offer support in many ways including providing crisis grants, researching the long lasting impact of blast injuries on the body, lobbying the government on issues that affect communities, sport and art based recovery programmes and advising on benefits and money problems.
Peter Milne, the Royal British Legion’s community fundraiser in Durham, said: “The work of the Legion is as relevant and vital today as it was in the aftermath of the First World War when the charity was founded.
“The donation for your poppy will help the Legion support today’s Armed Forces community through hardships, injury and bereavements.
“We’re encouraging people to dig deep for this year’s Poppy Appeal to help us raise £47 million.
“The Legion’s work is entirely dependent on the public’s generous support – so please wear your poppy with pride, knowing that you are helping the Armed Forces community to live on.”
The fundraising target in Durham and North Tees is £800,000, which will go towards the Legion’s national target of £47 million to continue its work delivering practical, through care and support to the Armed Forces community.
Canon David Kennedy, Sub-Dean of Durham Cathedral says, “We are delighted to be able to host a Garden of Remembrance by the DLI Boer War memorial, close to the entrance of the Cathedral.
“We very much hope that it captures the imagination of the public, serving as a symbol of commemoration, whilst generating funds for the Royal British Legion as it continues to support veterans of military conflicts.”
The garden was launched with the help of RAF veteran and mum-of-three Anna Pollock, 35, who was left with lasting nerve damage following a bleed on her spine in 2013.
The charity has helped her after she was left struggling to walk and reliant on a wheelchair, and as she took part in the Invictus Games last year.
The Garden of Remembrance until Monday, November 13.
Visitors to the cathedral will be able to make a donation to the Royal British Legion in exchange for a wooden cross inside the church.