Chichester crocuses bloom as reminder of Rotary’s End Polio now campaign

Thousands of purple crocuses planted a decade ago by the Rotary clubs of Chichester are in bloom along New Park Road.

Thursday, 4th March 2021, 10:57 am

Rotary clubs across the world have planted tens of millions of crocus bulbs over the years to publicise their End Polio Now campaign, which has seen three billion children immunised over the last 15 years.

Rotary campaigner Caroline Easton said: “Rotary’s long campaign to eradicate polio is so close to total success. But we must continue the fight until every child throughout the world is safe from this crippling disease.

“We will be fundraising again for this amazing cause as soon as lockdown ends and we’ll welcome more people in Chichester helping Rotary in this cause.

Purple crocuses in New Park Road, Chichester, which were planted 10 years ago as part of Rotary's End Polio Now campaign

“Hopefully in years to come the slogan ‘End Polio Now’ won’t be needed – but the crocus will remain as the symbol of Rotary’s greatest achievement, conquering polio.”

A decade ago Rotary in Chichester was a close runner-up a Guinness World Records challenge to plant the most crocus bulbs in a two hours.

The crocus was chosen as the symbol of the campaign because the purple colour matches the dye that is painted on the fingers of children who have been immunised.

Polio has now been eradicated from most parts of the world, with cases now occurring in Afghanistan and Pakistan only.

Purple crocuses in New Park Road, Chichester, which were planted 10 years ago as part of Rotary's End Polio Now campaign

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Purple crocuses in New Park Road, Chichester, which were planted 10 years ago as part of Rotary's End Polio Now campaign

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