ON the 11th hour, of the 11th day, of the 11th month in 1918, the First World War ended.
Civilians wanted to remember those who had given their lives and it was American War Secretary, Moina Michael, inspired by John McCrae’s poem, in Flander’s Fields, who began selling poppies to raise money for the ex-service community.
More than 90 years on, the tradition is still going strong and, on Saturday, October 27, Chichester launched its annual Poppy Appeal.
Appeal co-ordinator Ray Carter said: “With the barracks closed and being redeveloped, airfields gone, the shrinkage of the Royal Navy in Portsmouth, it would be easy to forget Chichester’s proud links throughout history with the Armed Forces.
“But Chichester’s citizens show their respect for our war dead, and pride and thanks to our present serving military and their dependants, year after year, in their amazing support of the national Poppy Appeal, the military covenant in action.
“Close to £40,000 was raised last year, a magnificent effort by the city, elected representatives and citizens together.”
The appeal is based in the city council’s Assembly Rooms and will see will see over 200 collecting cans and 40,000 poppies in more than 150 venues,hospitals, schools,shops, offices, funeral parlours. The county-wide appeal was launched with a fly past at Shoreham Airport on Thursday, October 25.