I finally made it a few nights ago to the Tower of London to see the ceramic poppies which form part of the "Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red" installation created by artists Paul Cummins and Tom Piper - better late than never!
The evolving exhibition which commemorates the centenary of the outbreak of the First World War was an amazing sight with each handmade poppy representing a fallen hero. I found it particularly poignant as my family have purchased a number of poppies for my great Uncle Dr Aaron Simeon Cohen who after qualifying at St Guys Hospital, London enlisted as a doctor and died on the battlefield at the Battle of Loos in 1914, helping others. He was only 24.
However, it was a shame that by the time I visited, many of the 888,246 poppies that had filled the moat had already been removed. This meant that I didn't get to see the full impact of the installation. Nevertheless, here are a couple of shots from vantage points where you can still see the moat pretty full. I also went back the next day to photograph the impressive arch cascading over one of the main drawbridges that leads into to the Tower. Here, the poppies are being kept illuminated until the end of November providing them with an added mood and poignancy.
If you haven't seen the installation yet and live in London, I would strongly encourage you to make the trip before all of the poppies have been removed and delivered to the various people across the country who have purchased them with proceeds going to help various military charities. Don't fret though; even if you don't have a chance to visit, part of the exhibition will be touring various parts of the UK throughout 2015.