Manchester: National Trust Plants Snowdrop Flowers to Commemorate WWI

The National Trust has started its “Snowdrop City” project — the planting of snowdrop flowers in eight locations across Manchester to commemorate the centenary of the First World War. For the project, the trust used about 100,000 snowdrop flowers which are said to symbolize hope and peace. The same white flowers were planted on the graves of soldiers to make them look less bleak.

According to BBC News, the Manchester Gallery alone has 30,000 snowdrop flowers displayed above sandbags arranged that they resemble war bunkers during the Great War. Other locations for the snowdrop flowers planting and display include the Manchester Cathedral and the Northern Quarter.

Volunteers coming from Manchester’s community groups as well as schools have planted the bulbous plants last year, months ahead of their flowering season which normally occurs between January and April.

As Mr. Sean Harkin, National Trust’s gardener-in-residence for Manchester, points out, the snowdrop flowers will leave a lasting legacy for all to see. He feels proud of the project which is made possible by Manchester’s own citizens in remembrance of those who lived during the WWI-era, especially those who sacrificed their lives in the said conflict.

The Manchester Art Gallery Snowdrop Flowers Display [Photo Credit: National Trust]
The Manchester Art Gallery Snowdrop Flowers Display [Photo Credit: National Trust]
The Manchester Art Gallery war bunker exhibit with the snowdrop flowers will go on until February. It runs alongside the Heaven in a Hell of War exhibit which features the masterpieces created by Stanley Spencer, a painter and soldier who served at Salonika, Greece during the Great War.

The flowers will, then, be replanted in Newton Heath’s Brookdale Park, the planned permanent home of the bulbous flowering plants.

Facts about Snowdrop Flowers

  • Perennial flowering plants from the Galanthus genus
  • Has about twenty wild species growing throughout the globe
  • Is part of the onion family
  • Some of the first bulbs to bloom within the year
  • Commonly found in gardens, churchyards, parks and many woodlands

Heziel Pitogo

Heziel Pitogo is one of the authors writing for WAR HISTORY ONLINE