Chelsea Pensioners join unique Armistice commemorations

Digger maker JCB marked the centenary of the World War One Armistice in three unique ways.

A team of JCB apprentices and graduates has created a distinctive art installation which holds 255 ceramic poppies. It has been made by a team of more than 30 ex-services employees and each poppy represents a soldier from Uttoxeter and the villages surrounding JCB’s HQ in Staffordshire who gave who gave their life in the conflict.

The company has also auctioned  a 16C-1 mini excavator in stunning poppy livery for the Royal British Legion which has raised £25,500. It was bought by JCB customer Arnold Plant Hire Limited, of Stockport. In addition, a moving pictorial roll of honour standing 25 feet high and 40 feet wide bearing 50 photographs of JCB employees’ relatives who served in World War 1 has been put on public display at the company’s HQ.

The auction total was announced by JCB Chairman Lord Bamford today as the company hosted the Staffordshire Poppy Appeal Launch at its World HQ in Staffordshire. The art installation and special roll of honour were also unveiled at the event, which was attended by Chelsea Pensioners.

Lord Bamford said: “As a nation we must never forget the debt we owe to the Great War generation, and this year is our opportunity to say ‘Thank You’.  Many people who work at JCB had forebears who fought, and in many cases died, in World War I. So many families were torn apart by that awful conflict, so it’s important that we not only say thank you, but that we also do no forget.”

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