Sisters create poppies for Warwick Poppies project as a tribute to mum

Diana Chambers with some of her handmade poppies in St Mary's Church in Warwick.
Diana Chambers with some of her handmade poppies in St Mary's Church in Warwick.
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The daughters of a 96-year-old who knitted 50 poppies for the Warwick Poppies Project are honouring her memory by making a further 100 poppies.

Diana Chambers, (70), who lives in Warwick, recently knitted 50 poppies for the Warwick Poppies 2018 Project and her sister Brenda Howe will be knitting another 50.

Joyce Chambers, Diana and Brenda's mum, made 50 poppies for the Warwick Poppies Project.

Joyce Chambers, Diana and Brenda's mum, made 50 poppies for the Warwick Poppies Project.

The sisters decided to contribute to the project in memory of their mum Joyce Chambers, who knitted 50 poppies after learning about the project from a neighbour.

The Warwick Poppies 2018 project, aims to collect as many poppies as possible in the space of a year to make a tribute that will be on display inside St Mary’s Church to commemorate 100 years since the end of the First World War.

The project was officially launched took place on Tuesday, September 5 at St Mary’s Church in Warwick by Timothy Cox, Lord Lieutenant of Warwickshire, who is also the project Patron.

Joyce, who was 96, had handed in the poppies and was invited to the project’s official launch but died before the launch.

Helen Fitzpatrick from the Warwick Poppies 2018 project with Diana Chambers.

Helen Fitzpatrick from the Warwick Poppies 2018 project with Diana Chambers.

Diana said: “My mum was always creative. She did needlework, embroidery and knitting. When she was out and about with my dad she would see things and think ‘I could make that’.

“She lived in South Wales but came to live with me in Warwick in February after she was diagnosed with Leukaemia.

“She had the most marvellous care from the Aylesford Ward at Warwick Hospital and Myton Hospice.

“A neighbour told us about the poppy project. My grandfather, my mum’s father, was in the Royal Warwickshire Regiment during the First World War and he was at the Battle of the Somme. He was injured three times but he survived.

“Because of this it really appealed to my mum to start knitting the poppies.

“It only took her a few weeks to make all 50.

“She was so touched to be invited to the launch.”

Both Diana and Brenda attended the launch event on behalf of their mum and now the sisters have decided to match their mum’s poppies as a tribute to both their mum and to the project.

Diana said: “I decided to make the poppies after mum passed away. It was so nice to sit next to her watching her knit away.

“The poppies are for the project and for our mum. It is our way of saying thank you to her. Her poppies being used is a real tribute to mum’s end of life and it’s something really special.

“My sister is now working on her 50 poppies.”

Helen Fitzpatrick, on behalf of the Warwick Poppies 2018 project, said: “Everyone on the committee was really thrilled to receive Joyce Chambers beautiful poppies, especially as she was (and still is) our oldest poppy donor.

“Her sad passing, so soon before our launch, was felt by us all, as we would have dearly loved to have had the opportunity to meet her in person.

“These new poppies that have been created by her daughter Diana, in tribute to her mother, allow Warwick Poppies 2018 to be part of the legacy of a most special lady, and we are honoured to receive them.

“It is a fantastic example of a “community” coming together and is a true act of Remembrance.”