ONE HUNDRED thousand poppies fell from the Weymouth skies to mark the launch of the Royal britsh legion’s Poppy Appeal.

Veterans, fundraisers and school children gathered to watch as the poppies were released from the Sea Life Tower at noon yesterday.

Weymouth and Portland Borough Mayor Coun Margaret Leicester, who travelled in the Tower, said: “It’s hugely important that we not only continue to remember the First and Second World Wars, but all the wars that have taken place and are ongoing.

“So many people have been affected and their families still need the support of the British Legion.

“It’s also important to teach children about the Poppy Appeal. Some of them may have family members out in Afghanistan.”

Sea Life Tower general manager RJ Henshall braved the winds to release the poppies.

Once safety harnessed, RJ threw the poppies from the tower’s emergency escape.

He said: “I’m very proud to be the one that got to release the poppies. I’m glad they all went in the direction we wanted. “It’s nice to be a part of something as important as the Poppy Appeal and hopefully this will keep it in everybody’s minds.”

Youngsters from Conifers and Beechcroft St Paul’s schoos joined in the ceremony, decorating the Sea Life land train with poppy inspired posters.

Beechcroft teaching assistant Deanne O’Beirne said: “The children are so excited about today. And it’s not because they get a couple of hours out of class, it’s because they know all about the poppy appeal and are really happy to be a part of it.”

Coun Christine James said: “I would like to see us do this every year.

“It’s such a good idea and it’s so important to recognise what the Poppy Appeal is.”