Developer sponsors 50,000 poppy drop for D-Day veterans

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Fifty thousand poppies will fall over the beach of Hunstanton in an emotional tribute to the Second World War soldiers who died during the D-Day landings in Normandy – thanks to the generosity of a South Holland developer.

Ashley King, of Ashley King Developments Ltd, has agreed to sponsor the poppy drop, which has been organised by Harold Payne, owner of the Anglia Motel in Fleet Hargate, as part of the 70th anniversary of D-Day.

Mr Payne has just returned from taking a party of 42, including six veterans, to Normandy for the anniversary.

A two-day event over Saturday and Sunday will now take place opposite the pier in Hunstanton for veterans who could not make the trip and anyone else who would like to go along to mark their service to the country.

Mr Payne said: “We chose Hunstanton because, with its cliffs, the beach is like Normandy.

“The 50,000 poppies will represent the lads who died in the landings, so it will be very emotional.

“We are very grateful to Mr King for sponsoring it.”

Mr King said he was delighted to support the veterans in this way.

Fenland Flying Club will fly drop poppies over Hunstanton beach at 5.30pm on Sunday. There will be a display of military vehicles over the weekend, with 40s-style entertainment on the Sunday and a Dakota fly-past.