Tower of London poppy artist Paul Cummins lost a finger while making the ceramic flowers

The 37-year-old crushed his hand in an industrial roller in May

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The Independent Online

The artist who designed the poppies currently surrounding the Tower of London has revealed he lost a finger while working on the commemorative installation.

Paul Cummins’ right hand was crushed in an industrial roller used to create the 888,246 ceramic flowers, which represent every British fatality between 1914 and 1918.

The ceramic artist, 37, told the Mirror: "I did nearly kill myself halfway through. We had to rally the troops.

"Morphine helped."

He lost his middle finger and the use of his index finger in the accident in May, which prevented him from finishing off the poppies. However, he hopes to return to work in six months.


Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red marks the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of the First World War.

It will be on display at the Tower of London until Remembrance Day on 11 November, when the last poppy will be placed in the moat.

Four million people are expected to have visited by tribute by Armistice Day.