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Space Park Leicester to shine red for Remembrance Day

The University of Leicester was originally built as a living memorial for local people who made sacrifices during the First World War. ©Martin Hamilton Knight

Space Park Leicester will honour those who have lost their lives in the line of duty by lighting up its pioneering facility in red for Remembrance Day.

As part of the £100 million state-of-the-art research hub’s mission to raise money for the Royal British Legion’s Poppy Appeal, for the first time Space Park Leicester will be lighting up its building in red to thank those who have gone into battle to protect the country.

The front and side of the building in Corporation Road will shine red from Thursday, November 10 to Sunday, November 13, to remember the service and sacrifice of the armed forces from Great Britain and the Commonwealth. People will be given the opportunity to donate to the Royal British Legion’s Poppy Appeal.

The University of Leicester was originally built as a living memorial for local people who made sacrifices during the First World War.

Since 2018, 82 poppy wreaths have been laid at memorial sites across Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland, and this year the University of Leicester hopes to complete its Poppy Pilgrimage by visiting the final 18 sites. This will mark the completion of the University’s mission to lay 100 poppy wreaths to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the end of the First World War.

For many residents living in Leicester in the 1920s, the University was recognised as a symbol of peace, harmony and reconciliation.

Ex-serviceman John Holt is a Research Engineer at the University of Leicester. He said: “The University of Leicester has always supported our Armed Forces, particularly staff who serve as reservist soldiers.

“At Space Park Leicester we are proud to continue that heritage with several staff members who have recently served in operational campaigns in places like Afghanistan.

“By lighting up Space Park Leicester in red, staff, visitors and the general public will get the chance to remember, recognise and celebrate the brave individuals who have lost or put their life on the line to protect our country.

He added: “Remembrance Day is vital to the University of Leicester due to the foundations of the organisation stemming from the First World War, so we are thrilled to mark this important occasion alongside them.”

HM Lord-Lieutenant of Leicestershire, Mike Kapur OBE, said: “I am delighted that the iconic Space Park Leicester is joining other venues across Leicestershire in showing its support for the Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal by lighting up in red to honour those that have made the greatest sacrifice to protect us.”

Visitors are asked to share pictures on social media using the hashtag #LightUpInRed.

Space Park Leicester has been designed to support increased collaboration between University of Leicester researchers and educators and the private sector, creating high quality knowledge-based jobs, building the skills base through training, and contributing to economic growth and resilience of the economy. The project is led by the University of Leicester in partnership with Leicester City Council and the Leicester and Leicestershire Enterprise Partnership (LLEP).