Ceramic poppies are headed to Orkney to commemorate Jutland

St Magnus Cathedral in Kirkwall, Orkney.' Picture: Jane Barlow
St Magnus Cathedral in Kirkwall, Orkney.' Picture: Jane Barlow
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MUSIC with Damon Albarn, fashion from Vivienne Westwood and poems by Simon Armitage form a new programme of events marking the First World War centenary.

Part of the spectacular sea of ceramic poppies at the Tower of London will also feature when it goes on display at St Magnus Cathedral in Orkney to commemorate the Battle of Jutland.

Damon Albarn will appearat the Royal Festival Hall in June. Picture: PA

Damon Albarn will appearat the Royal Festival Hall in June. Picture: PA

The events will be based around the anniversary of the Battle of the Somme and are put together by 14-18 NOW, the UK’s official arts programme to commemorate the Great War.

The programme involves 140 artists, 80 new artworks, and will include events in all parts of the UK with organisers hoping it will be enjoyed by as many as 20 million people.

Highlights include Blur frontman Albarn who will appear when the Africa Express project presents the Syrian National Orchestra for Arabic Music at the Royal Festival Hall in London on 25 June.

Africa Express brings together musicians from different cultures, genres and generations in a bid to break boundaries and offer a new perspective on Africa and its music. The Syrian National Orchestra for Arabic Music first appeared with Albarn in Damascus in 2008.