I recently received the spring edition of the National Trust magazine. The front cover carried a faded black and white image of a building in the background contrasting with bright red poppies in the foreground. The building is Dunham Massey and one of the features in the magazine explains how the house is being transformed back into the Stamford Military Hospital it was in 1917-19.
This is one of a series of nationwide and international events that will be taking place during 2014-18 to commemorate the centenary of World War One. The series of events are being led by the Imperial War Museum, which has a dedicated website entitled 1914.org.
The events will serve to remind us of those who sacrificed their lives so that we can enjoy the freedoms we have today as well as reminding us to be grateful for their sacrifice.
The poppy fields as described by the ‘War Poets’ are a poignant reminder to me of the lives that were lost in both World War One and World War Two and also the lives lost in more recent wars.
Poppies to me are a simile of the lives that were lost. They are vibrant, standing strong and bold yet fragile and defeated by a heavy downfall or a spring breeze. They remind me of the fragility of peace and freedom and how easily our freedom can be lost.
The 1914 website points out that “one hundred years on we are all in some way connected to the First World War, either through our own family history, the heritage of our local communities or because of its long-term impact on society and the world we live in today.”
Reflection on World War One serves as a reminder of what might have been if the outcome of that war had been different…