Whilst the team at Cove Industries is accustom to adapting their skills to unusual engineering challenges, a request from a local school to engineer and manufacture some pastry cutter style tools for the children to make ceramic poppies captivated the interest of Cove Industries MD, Phill Gower.
Cove Industries actively supports the local community and charity projects, having previously assisted in the construction of a Christmas float for the local Lions Club and viewing platforms for a local nature reserve. Therefore the team was delighted to assist with the Remembrance Day project when contacted by Moin Ghani, Deputy Chair of the Hawley Place School PTA.
With this year marking one hundred years since the start of the First World War the school organised a trip to the Somme and Ypres battlefields, during which 30 girls attended the Last Post Ceremony at the Menin Gate and the head girls laid a wreath.
Inspired by the school trip and the Paul Cummins installation of 888,246 ceramic poppies at the Tower of London (one to represent each British and Colonial casualty), Moin Ghani initiated a project for the school to create their own field of 500 ceramic poppies to educate all 350 pupils at the school (aged from 2 to 16 yrs) about Remembrance Day.
The poppies will then be sold with the aim to raise £2,000 for the Royal British Legion charity.
Mr Ghani said: “Our intention was to educate the pupils about the commemoration by involving them with every stage of production and being able to see the poppies on display at school.”
Whilst a simple pastry style cutter would have sufficed to profile the petal shapes, the team at Cove Industries applied their natural design skills to incorporate a simple but effective ejecting mechanism that made the profiling of the soft clay easy and safe for all of the children to use, even the very young ones.
It was important for all of the children to be directly involved at every stage in the project, so the clever and safe design of the cutter was ideal for all of the children to be fully involved at the more difficult stage of the project.