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Student artwork commemorates former pupils lost in war

Sunday 11 November 2018

A field of poppies has been planted at The Grammar School at Leeds in memory of the school’s old boys who lost their lives in the First World War.

These are not poppies that will come and go with the seasons; made of clay and metal they have been individually handcrafted by the school’s current pupils as a lasting tribute to their predecessors whose lives after school were tragically cut short by the war.

There are 130 poppies in total and each one bears the name of an old boy of Leeds Grammar School who lost his life in service. The project marks the centenary of the signing of the Armistice and in due course the poppies will be distributed around the school as permanent memorials to the 130 old boys.

Principal Sue Woodroofe said: “I’m so proud that we have our own field of poppies outside the school’s main entrance with each poppy made by one of our current students in honour of every former pupil fallen in the First World War.

“Each poppy has the name of an individual boy engraved on it and represents a real life, a set of hopes, dreams and ambitions that never reached fulfilment. The project has been a marvellous way for school in 2018 to mark the sacrifice of our boys leading up to 1918.”

Students fully embraced the commemorative project, creating the poppy heads in their art lessons and the stems and poppy centres in design technology. WRA industrial Coatings donated their services to coat the stems for durability.

Y10 student Holly Turner said: “On Remembrance Sunday it’s important to remember the former pupils who died in the war so we’ve taken the project very seriously and want it to be just right.”

Fellow student Muhammad Elmirghani added: “As a school Leeds Grammar School gave so many lives to the war and the poppies are a meaningful way to commemorate the old boys. They look amazing.”

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