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Red Poppy




Our Lady Queen of Peace RC Church in Penshaw is one of five parish churches in Washington and surrounding Houghton-le-Spring and Birtley areas.  As the name suggests, the Church was dedicated to peace just as the war officially ended in 1919, (although the cease fire ended on 11 November 1918)
To commemorate the centenary of the war, we invite you to read more about the poppy project taking place across the whole of the parish, and may we take the opportunity to thank everyone for their ongoing support throughout the installation of the project.



At a church council meeting in late May, the choir master / organist / church musician of Our Lady Queen of Peace,  said he would like to organise and prepare a special musical liturgy for the centenary Remembrance Day.

The following week, at an ecumenical Church Together meeting, a member showed a knitted poppy she had made, along with the pattern she had used which looked simple to do but very effective.

The idea to decorate the church to compliment the wonderful musical liturgy came whilst a group of friends from the church were on a walking pilgrimage.  Following research on the Durham Light Infantry (DLI), it was decided to create 13,000 handmade poppies to represent the 13,000 soldiers of County Durham who lost their life in the war.

It is important to remember that although this is being done in church, it isn't a religious project but a whole community project to commemorate those who died.

Poppy Front


All those from the Durham Light Infantry who died during WW1 will have their names displayed in alphabetical order on the ends of the pews.
The Parish dead from the first world war will also be remembers in a Remembrance book, a scroll and with crosses in a Peace Garden which is also being created.

Making poppies (2).jpg


Our aim of 13,000 poppies has been exceeded through the hard work of the parishioners who have been busy knitting, sewing, crocheting, origamiing, cutting, sticking, gluing and sculpting poppies since May.  The hard work continues - make sure you check back to stay up to date with the poppy count!

Current count: 20,045

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