A high school brought itself to the attention of the police for all the right reasons.
Ellesmere Port’s University Church of England Academy is just across the road from the town’s police station. So their stunning Armistice Day display of thousands of beautiful handcrafted poppies could not help but impress the police and passers by.
The police arrested the scene in a Tweet which said: “Congratulations to @UCEAcademy for their stunning display to mark Armistice Day. All officers hugely impressed!”
The academy explains that students, staff and members of the community were involved in making the poppies as part of the academy’s latest art project in honour of Armistice Day marking the end of the First World War.
In the early morning the the sea of poppies lined the gates of the academy to remember the fallen.
The community-based project was set up by the academy’s art department with the aim of ensuring students, staff and local residents valued the history and importance of the significant day.
The collaboration, which sought to bring the community and students together, was supported by the Hollymere extra care scheme, school pastors, academy students from years 7, 8 and 9 and the Rock Solid youth group as well as sixth form art students.
Erin Lightfoot, head girl at UCEA, commented: “I felt an immense sense of pride to witness the magnitude of the response which our poppy display received. Being a part of the production and the displaying of the poppies was a real honour.”
Dylan Ravenscroft, a Year 13 student also felt that taking part in the Armistice Day mural was an honour. “The positive reaction we gained from the local community made the event even more worthwhile with many members applauding the efforts of the academy,” he said.
“The event itself was inspired by the war veterans who came to visit us during our time in the engage project in the town centre where they spoke to us about their experiences in the world wars.
“This experience of meeting the veterans was an extremely inspirational opportunity which motivated us to create the Armistice Day display for the local community to enjoy and help to remember those who fought and are still fighting for their country.”
On Remembrance Sunday Mr Tom Hutchinson, newly appointed principal at UCEA, was accompanied by sixth form students who read a set of prayers at the cenotaph in the Civic Square. During the service, a group of Year 7 and 10 students laid a wreath, also created by the UCEA Art Department, at the memorial.
Throughout the previous week, students had been supporting the poppy appeal by selling for the charity at break and lunchtime.
All students were involved in various projects and presentations to raise awareness of the origin of the poppy symbol and with the staff fell silent for two minutes as they remembered those who fought.
In November 2012, UCEA entered the record books when it successfully formed the largest human flower, a poppy, in the world. A thousand academy students, a thousand pupils from local primary schools and almost 190 participants from local churches came together to make history for Remembrance Day and mark the opening of the new £25m campus. The academy entered the Guinness Book of Records.
Was your child involved in the display? Did you see it? Let us know in the comments below