14 million poppies planted

FLOWER POWER: Volunteers replant the 'stolen' poppies at Happy Mount Park,
FLOWER POWER: Volunteers replant the 'stolen' poppies at Happy Mount Park,

A campaign to cover Morecambe with beautiful red poppies has hit its target by selling 14m seeds – one for every soldier killed during the First World War.

The success of the Morecambe Poppy Scatter, set up to mark the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of the Great War, was revealed as supporters turned out in force on D-Day to replant ‘stolen’ poppy seeds at Happy Mount Park.

Around 150 people, including the Morecambe MP David Morris, schoolchildren, local councillors and war veterans, joined in the replanting on Friday in glorious sunshine.

This came after around 120-130,000 seeds disappeared from the flower bed at the park in mysterious circumstances. Steve Trainor, organiser of the Poppy Scatter, believes the beds were deliberately targeted.

Mr Trainor said he was “overwhelmed” by the response of the public.

“What a poignant day, with it being the 70th anniversary of D-Day,” he said.

“We had everybody here, from a three-year-old right through to pensioners. Words fail me.”

CCTV has now been installed to watch over the flower bed to make sure the poppies flower as planned.

The 14m seeds have been sown in Morecambe and further afield to raise money for the British Legion and the Commenwealth War Graves Commission.

“People have bought seeds from Morecambe and sent them all over the world,” said Mr Trainor, a bus driver from Heysham.