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Honouring Anzacs with community poppy projects

8 November, 2018

Friends of the Maryborough Cemetery and Hervey Bay’s Graffiti Grannies are marking the 100th anniversary of Armistice on 11 November with more than 10,000 poppies across the region.

Fraser Coast Mayor George Seymour thanked all volunteers who participated in the poppy projects that honour the servicemen and women who died in the service of our nation during World War I.  

“That war took the lives of 62,000 Australians who fought for our freedom,” Cr Seymour said. 

“Friends of the Maryborough Cemetery, under the auspice of the Fraser Coast Regional Council, has organised the placing of poppies on the graves of military men or women at rest in Fraser Coast cemeteries.”

Led by local historian Margaret Wroe, the group has organised local youth service groups including guides, scouts and defence force cadets to lay poppies on Saturday 10 November.

“On Saturday at the Maryborough (Walker Street) and Hervey Bay (Pt Vernon) cemeteries, the youths will start laying the poppies from 9.30am to the sound of Scottish bagpipes,” Mrs Wroe said. 

“About 10am or soon after, they will all come back to central positions for ceremonies attended by Council and RSL representatives, as well as descendants of people who fought in World War I.”

“Students at Tiaro and Howard state schools will also lay poppies on Friday 9 November at their towns’ cemeteries from 9.30am.”

Mrs Wroe said Council had been very supportive of this project, with $1,040 being contributed from Cr Seymour’s discretionary funds.

At the Hervey Bay RSL, a wall of more than 7000 hand-crafted red poppies will be on display throughout November, symbolically representing Australian lives lost during World War I. 

Cr Seymour said each poppy had been created by a Graffiti Granny volunteer. The group also had a great response from the community. 

“The knitted and crocheted poppies vary in colour, size and style and the display is looking great.

“If people want to put a little tag on a poppy with someone’s name they want to remember, such as a relative who they lost in the war, they can. Small poppies will also be available for purchase.”