Remembrance Sunday is officially here and the annual traditions are well underway. Over 100 years since Remembrance Day was first held, this year the time of reflection falls on Sunday, November 14th.
Poppies are worn as a commemoration of those who lost their lives in war. Regarded as symbols of peace and hope, poppies are often worn during the lead up to Remembrance Sunday. Here’s a look at which side a poppy should be worn on.
Why do people wear poppies?
Poppies are worn as symbols of remembrance every November. The origins of the poppy date back to World War One.
A Canadian officer named John McCrae sparked the inspiration for people to see the poppy as a representation of those lost at war. His poem, In Flanders Fields, details the poppies which grew on battlefields.
The poem begins: “In Flanders’ fields the poppies blow, between the crosses, row on row…“
He wrote the poem in 1915 and in 1921, the Royal British Legion began selling false poppies to raise money for war veterans.
Read More: How to lay a wreath correctly on Remembrance Day
Which side should you wear a poppy on?
Traditionally, poppies are worn on the left-hand side of the chest. The left side is preferred not just because it’s where military medals are worn, but also because it’s seen as a symbol of keeping those who died at war close to your heart.
If there’s anyone to follow when it comes to which side being best to wear your poppy, The Queen is probably up there. She wears her poppies on her left.
The Royal British Legion says that there isn’t a correct or incorrect side to wear a poppy on. Their website reads: “It’s a matter of personal choice whether someone chooses to wear a poppy and how they choose to wear it. The best way to wear a poppy is simply with pride.”
When should you start wearing a poppy?
For anyone that wants to, poppies can be worn year-round. However, they’re more commonly worn from the beginning of the Grat British Legion’s Poppy Appeal until Remembrance Sunday.
In 2021, the Poppy Appeal started on October 28th and Remembrance Sunday is on November 14th.
Remembrance Sunday always falls on the second Sunday in November, so people usually wear a poppy for the first two weeks of the month.
See Also: What is London’s Remembrance Day Parade route?
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