THE centre of Royal Wootton Bassett was yarn bombed with 600 knitted poppies this week as the town prepared to mark Remembrance Day.

Dozens of nimble-fingered volunteers had spent the past two months creating the symbols. Then, early on Monday morning, under the cover of darkness, a small team dressed trees, left poppies on windowsills and hung them on doorknobs to be discovered by townspeople after dawn broke.

Linda Frost, one of the organisers, said: “What we wanted to do was make people stop and think for a while.”

A huge poppy, made from shapes cut out by brownies and guides in Wootton Bassett and Lyneham, was draped on the town hall with the help of town council grounds staff and a cargo net supplied by MOD Lyneham.

One of the 35 knitters managed to make 60 poppies. “That was a lot in such a short time,” said town council admin officer Kelly Warren.

The project was co-ordinated by Royal Wootton Bassett Community Together with help from the council.

“It is very much a community event,” explained Linda. “The children have actually been very, very receptive. They love to see the poppies. It is something that we can talk to them about and it is something they can think about.”

Last year’s yarn bomb had such an impact a local business offered to sponsor the group this year with money to buy the materials. The amount of money collected for the Royal British Legion’s poppy appeal in the town is also understood to have increased.

Dotted all around the high street area, the poppies are intended for people to take away in return for a donation to the RBL appeal. There are collection points at Sainsbury’s, Crump’s butchers, the Post Office and the town council offices.

The memorial will provide the focus for a short service at 11am on Saturday while there will be a full parade in the high street on Sunday at 2pm.