Wearing of poppy

This parody page highlights the problem with remembrance these days: https://mobile.twitter.com/giantpoppywatch

Look for the re-tweets of the vile abuse people give out for people wearing the ‘wrong’ poppy, poppies on the ‘wrong’ side and people not wearing poppies. It’s ridiculous.


It’s not for us to pass any kind of judgment or second guess reasons.

I’ve never had the situation, but would probably go with something like:

“for my interest, and because you may be asked by others who don’t know you, why don’t you want to wear one?”

There will be a reason and it’s obviously important enough for the cadet, but they should be prepared to explain their reasons just in case, and staff should be aware in case they need to step in.

Personally, I often only wear one on the parade. Mainly because I lose so many that I’m 50% without anyway and if I lose it in the street it becomes litter - with potential negative feelings towards RBL because of that.

Some really wise answers in this thread.

But not on a parade. You either all wear one, or you don’t.

I would wager that twitter feed is a trolling account. And you have fallen for it.

The poppies do need to be more environmentally friendly, the plastic storks are probably not recyclable.

That’s my biggest bug bear with them, but I wear an enamel one with my cap badge in it and I still put money in the tins when I can.

Problem with parades is that most staff are in No1’s and all cadets are in No2A. You do not have uniformity on the parade to begin with in the ATC so you cant really argue a cadet not wearing a poppy is affecting “uniformity”.

Actually: The parade commander does not have the authority to make all personnel remove there poppy. the only exception is:

The paper poppy may be removed at the discretion of a parade commander where it is possible for it to be inadvertently knocked off by arms drill.

My main concern is with public perception on the remembrance parade.

A few years back poppies were prohibited from wear on parade within our/RAF regulations and I understand that it was in part due to negative comments from the public that this was changed to permit them.

I imagine similar comments if some people choose not to wear the poppy on the parade, but I’m happy to counter that if it happens.

I’ll be wearing mine.

It is a trolling account. That’s the point of it, it’s showing how ridiculous a spectacle remembrance has become by angrily celebrating the gaudier examples. But look at the tweets from other people it highlights,

And no, there is nothing to say in our regs that anyone has to wear a poppy on parade. So, it remains optional, I will continue to happily exercise my option not to wear one, and kindly explain my reasoning if challenged.


Thank you, You know what I mean…Let us hope for a dry Sunday coming up.

Last years parade when they started the march off to the church I could see poppies fall off uniform and lying on the road, by time we got to the church many had lost theirs as well as other cadet forces. There was no big deal and no one mentioned why cadets didn’t have a poppy on. The fact that we have cadets turn up for what is classed as a cold (sometimes wet) boring day (#DontUseCapitalLettersAgainstMe) is what we really want to see. Personally as I got older seeing Cadets marching through the streets was a heart warming sight. I’m sure as Cadets grow up they will see what these parades mean.

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I’m going to plug the unpopular opinion and sod the lot of you :wink:

It’s a parade. Optional items are not worn on parades.
For the duration of the parade the poppy is a uniform item, not an optional item - everyone wears one (the listed exceptions accepted).

The intention is that it is mandatory - the RAF and the RAFAC wear poppies on parade. The only exception (other than at the cenotaph) is that: “The paper poppy may be removed at the discretion of a parade commander where it is possible for it to be inadvertently knocked off by arms drill”.

If they’re not performing arms drill or they are but the Parade Commander doesn’t give permission for it to be removed then it should be worn by all personnel.

I make no requirements for my cadets to wear a poppy at any other time in uniform - it is optional and therefore it’s their personal choice. But for that one day on parade everyone wears one - because that’s what we do. There is nothing wrong with enforcing a mandatory standard now and then. We don’t have to be touchy-feely and worried over personal objections about everything. This is wearing a poppy for a couple of hours whilst representing the service which one has joined - we’re not asking them to shave their head.


As I will have new cadets in civilian dress as part of my parade should they choose to join us, I can’t lean too heavily on the “uniformity” crutch. :wink:

The wording changed from “Poppies are to be worn on Remembrance Parades” in v1.06 to “Only the conventional paper poppy is to be worn on ceremonial dress and on parades…” in later versions. I would not be surprised if the intention had been to retain the mandatory nature of the earlier wording but they tripped over the text when revising it to deal with the existence of the enamel poppy badge.

It would not be the first time that the authors of the AP have failed at proof-reading.

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I personally wouldn’t worry much about the presence of cadets in civies. They’re not wearing uniform therefore there is no requirement for them to wear uniform items - the poppy being one for these purposes.
No doubt they’d be encouraged to do so though.