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How big would the Tower of London’s poppy field be if it kept growing for the entire length of WWI?

Posted at 2:15 pm, November 7, 2014 in News, Photos of London
Portrait - leetneko

[Photo: leetneko]

Poppies are popular. Or at least Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red, the Tower of London’s WWI centenary installation, has managed to attract nigh-unmanageable hordes of visitors over the past month. It’s been so wildly successful, in fact, that political types like Nick Clegg and Boris Johnson have called for the installation (slated for dismantlement on November 11) to be kept in place a short while longer, although Historic Royal Palaces are refusing to budge.

But let’s think a little more long-term. The installation began on August 5, marking 100 years since the United Kingdom entered WWI, and over the past 13 weeks, 888,246 ceramic poppies have been installed in the moat. So what if the installation kept on growing until November 11, 2018, marking 100 years since the end of the war?

It would end up a little something like this:

Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red: Tower of London World War I Centenary Commemoration

If the poppies continued expanding outward at the current rate of 33.5 metres every 13 weeks, they’d expand to fill this huge area, from Tooley Street in the south, Monument to the West, Aldgate Station to the north and St Katherine’s Docks in the east.

Or, if the poppies continued to be added at the same rate – 888,246 every 13 weeks – then they’d occupy this slightly more compact area.

London poppies tower of london

This entire effort would require a total of 15,100,182 poppies, which, remarkably, is still less than the total number of military and civilian deaths in all sides of World War I.

So the Quakers have devised a map showing how 19.1 million poppies could snake through London’s streets from the tower, representing all deaths arising from the conflict:

It would stretch as far as Buckingham Palace, where it might look a bit like this:

white poppies quakers

For more, see 40 powerful photos of the Tower of London’s poppies.

Portrait - Sara Melhuish

[Photo: Sara Melhuish]

Portrait - Jeff

[Photo: Jeff]

Portrait - 2 Sara Melhuish

[Photo: Sarah Melhuish]

Portrait - Sara Melhuish 3

[Photo: Sara Melhuish]

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