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Queen Camilla

The special bond between Queen Camilla and the Poppy Factory

The Duchess of Cornwall reads from A Christmas Carol

Every Remembrance Day, one might notice a particular flower appearing, a red poppy. Often put onto a pin, the poppy is now the universally recognised flowers of remembrance for those who gave their lives for their country. It has become a key piece of the royal family’s wardrobe every November. It dates back to 1921 when it was used to commemorate military members who died in battle.

Queen Mary, consort to King George V, brought the poppy into the Royal Family by giving very public support to early campaigns to buy paper flowers to remember those lost and raise money to help soldiers who had returned from the battlefields of the Great War with injuries and damaged prospects. While she wears the poppy, it is not just a sign of remembrance for Queen Camilla who has taken a very personal role with an organisation at the heart of supporting wounded military for years.

In 2013, the then-Duchess of Cornwall became patron of The Poppy Factory—a factory in Richmond, London where remembrance wreaths are made. Since the 1920s, it has worked to make products to honour military members and made efforts to offer employment to veterans. Shortly after the appointment, Queen Camilla visited the factory.

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According to an article from Your Local Guardian shortly after the appointment, the new patron was ‘absolutely thrilled’ to take on her role and found the charity to be a ‘fantastic organisation.’ She met with factory workers and took a particular liking to one employee, the then-three-year-old golden retriever Kerrie. Queen Camilla even had a chance to try and make a poppy as well as put the finishing touches on a wreath, King Charles, then- the Prince of Wales was to lay at a memorial in India on that Remembrance Day.

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During her first Remembrance Day event as Queen, Camilla attended the 94th year of the Field of Remembrance at Westminster Abbey, a tribute to honour and remember those who died while serving in the armed forces. This marked her third time at this particular event. Queen Elizabeth, The Queen Mother often attended the Fields of Remembrance as did Prince Philip who visited attended the fields until he retired from royal duty in 2016. Prince Harry accompanied his grandfather and followed the tradition.

In November, the month of Remembrance, members of the Royal Family will participate in a number of events to honour military members. The most important of these events will be the National Service of Remembrance at The Cenotaph in London. Remembrance Sunday will be on 12 November this year.

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About author

My name is Sydney Zatz and I am a University of Iowa graduate. I graduated with a degree in journalism and sports studies, and a minor in sport and recreation management. A highlight of my college career was getting the chance to study abroad in London and experiencing royal history firsthand. I have a passion for royals, royal history, and journalism, which led me to want to write for Royal Central.