Worthing gets a purple surprise as crocus bulbs give best display yet

A purple surprise has burst open in Worthing, giving a stunning spread of colour to Broadwater Green.

Rotarians who helped plant 5,000 bulbs on the green in 2016 say people passing by cannot fail to be impressed by the display of several carpets of purple crocus around the boundary.

Rotarian David Chapman by one of the carpets of crocus

Rotarian David Chapman by one of the carpets of crocus

David Chapman, from West Worthing Rotary Club, said: “They have come out so well compared to the last couple of years.”

The bulbs were planted by members of the club and the Polio Fellowship of Worthing as part of the Purple 4 Polio campaign to eradicate polio from the world for good.

The purple represents the purple dye used to mark the finger of a child who has been immunised and to ensure none are missed or given a double dose.

For more than 30 years, Rotary has been committed to the programme and the aim has almost been achieved, as there are now just two countries out of 125 with some evidence of the virus left. Mor than 2.5billion children have received vaccinations thanks to the help of Rotary.

Dave Cook, club president, said: “Many of us still remember the way that polio left people disabled or only able to breathe with the help of ‘iron lungs’.

“It could so easily spread back here, so it is so important for everyone in the world to see it totally eradicated. It can be done and the purple crocus is our symbol of that aspiration.”

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