A ROUNDABOUT in Christchurch is a sea of red after being planted with poppies to commemorate the First World War.

Now in full bloom on the busy Stony Lane roundabout, the flowers have grown from seeds donated by Co-operative Funeral Care in Bargates, as part of a national project by the company.

The poppies mark the centenary of the outbreak of the First World War, also known as the Great War, which took place on July 28, 1914.

Events are taking place throughout the country to remember the occasion, including a number of poppy plantings.

A special Centenary Poppy Campaign, organised by the Royal British Legion, aims to cover the UK with poppies during the centenary period in commemoration of all those who lost their lives in the First World War.

The flower was one of the only plants to grow on the otherwise barren battlefields of Northern France and Flanders following the conflict and has since become a symbol of remembrance.

Jo Medlow, funeral arranger at the Christchurch funeral home, said: “We thought that it would be nice to donate all of the seeds we had to the council for them to plant somewhere everyone would be able to appreciate them and think about the men and women who gave their lives during World War I and all the conflicts since then.”

The Mayor of Christchurch, Cllr Denise Jones, added: “We’re very grateful to Co-operative Funeralcare for donating the seeds.

“They have contributed to a magnificent show, which has been seen by everyone approaching the roundabout.

“The poppies have added to all the other wild flowers, which the council has planted in various places in the borough, and which will be flowering over the summer months.”