Thursday, 7 August 2014

Visitors' Praise for Poem on a Puttee

 A Stitch in Time for the Centenary: Visitors to Fairlynch admire the embroidered puttee displayed by volunteers Lyn Cooke and Martyn Brown. 

First it was deckchairs. Now it’s puttees. It seems that there’s no end to the creative ideas that Fairlynch volunteers are coming up with to mark the Great War centenary.

“Puttees, from the Indian word for bandages, were the long khaki cloths that soldiers wore around their legs,” explained Museum friend Lyn Cooke.

“I thought that as an item of uniform they were so much part of the 1914-18 conflict and could be displayed as an emotive symbol for soldiers fighting in WW1".

“I proposed that to make them more special we could invite local people to try embroidering them with images, verses from WW1 poems, songs and inscriptions.”

The first embroidered puttee is based on a  line  from 'Aftermath' written in 1919 by  the war poet Siegfried Sassoon.

“I’m not an expert embroiderer but I thought I’d have a go myself,” said Martyn Brown, Fairlynch trustee. “It was quite a challenge, but I really enjoyed it. We’d welcome anyone who wants to try their hand, especially if they have a favourite quote about WW1. Or you may like to work on some suggested quotes.” 

If you would like to join this Great War Centenary project, funded by The Heritage Lottery Fund, and embroider a puttee, please contact Lyn Cooke or Martyn Brown on 01395 445171.  Or you can email them: or

Shown above are sections of the first embroidered puttee, based on a  line  from 'Aftermath' (1919) by  the war poet Siegfried Sassoon.

‘The Great War at Fairlynch’ 2015 exhibition at Budleigh Salterton’s very special museum! Reviews included: “Wonderful display on WW1, informative, bright and relevant. Well done!! 

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