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European Union Ambassador to Australia Michael Pulch says the striking installation is a moving tribute to honor those who died in the First World War and to mark the Centenary of the Armistice of 11 November, 1918.
"This war originated in Europe, involved more than 30 nations, was fought across different continents and had a profound impact worldwide. Many European countries gained or regained their independence as a result of it."
"This 'sea of poppies' is a moving tribute to the enormous sacrifices made on the battlefields, in particular those of the Aussie 'diggers' who left their homeland to fight in the trenches of Flanders, in France, Gallipoli and in the Middle East."
"These faraway battlefields are an important part of Europe's and Australia's own history. These poppies remind us of the sacrifices made and how important it is to stand together to preserve peace for future generations. The armistice is a century old, but even today lest we forget it remains as poignant as it was when it was first pronounced."
The 5000 Poppies project began in 2013 when Lynn Berry and Margaret Knight crocheted 120 red poppies to ‘plant’ at Melbourne’s Shrine of Remembrance. It has since grown into a garden of more than a million handcrafted poppies, created by more than 50,000 volunteers, installed around the world, each one honouring a life lost in war.
Designed by award-winning landscape architect Phillip Johnson, the installation has reached millions of people, featuring at the Chelsea Flower Show in London, the Cobbers Memorial in Fromelles, France and the Australian War Memorial.
The EU is a proud partner of the Parliament House installation which is open to the public from 9 to 18 November 2018.
Photographer: David Hempenstall, Department of Parliamentary Services