Purple poppies being created to honour the role of animals in war

Artist May Jones working with volunteers on the Purple Rein project
Artist May Jones working with volunteers on the Purple Rein project

An artist is going through a purple patch creating exhibits to honour the role of animals in war.

May Jones is holding a series of workshops making purple poppies, the symbol of animals killed in conflict, at The Village, Church Farm in Skegness.

The poppies will be woven into blankets to decorate a large model horse and cow at the museum.

Both exhibits will be on display at the Hildreds Shopping Centre on October 1 and 2.

The community arts project called Purple Rein is marking the First World War and the role that animals played in the conflict.

Visual artist John Byford developed the concept with May working alongside a team of volunteers to bring it to fruition.

Signed poppies will adorn the reins of the horse as a marker for each person who has taken part. A halo will also be created for the cow reflecting its sacred status to followers of Hinduism.

Arts Council England has provided funding for the project which is part of the skeg.co SO Festival Fringe events.

May, who studied fine art at Hull University, said: “I estimated that 1,600 poppies would be needed, but am aiming to make 1,914 to mark the outbreak of the Great War.

“It is a big task because we only have three full days so have almost got to make 700 a day.”

Workshops are taking place today (Wednesday) and next Wednesday from 11am to 4pm at Church Farm.