eBay has confirmed that the Tower of London poppies cannot be sold on the site. Anyone trying to sell one of the ceramic pieces of art will find their listing removed. The auction site has already started removing listings.
The artwork was created to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the start of World War 1. Over four million people are thought to have seen the display, which took months to create. The final poppy was “planted” during this morning’s two minute silence at 11am to remember those who died. In total, 888,246 ceramic poppies were used in the Tower of London display; one for each British soldier killed during the war.
People have already bought all the poppies available, at a rate of £25 (almost $40) each. While many wanted them to place them on their loved ones’ war graves or to keep a piece of history, others have decided to try and make money from them. eBay has already seen listings for the poppies at inflated prices. All money raised for the sale of the poppies is going to the charities that support servicemen and women from the British Armed Forces.
There is now a system in place to prevent anybody from creating a listing for the items. eBay has stated conclusively that the Tower of London poppies cannot be sold on the auction site. It is unclear whether other similar sites will take the same approach.
In a statement, a spokesperson for eBay stated that none of the limited edition poppies could be resold. All listings that attempt to do this will be cancelled, before any sales can take place. The company is not comfortable with the resale of something that is designed to be a memorial for one of the British soldiers killed during The Great War.
There are some poppies and poppy products available on the site. These are all direct from the Royal British Legion, the official poppy sellers. The charity is working with eBay and has a shop dedicated to selling official products. Those who wish to buy something off eBay are encouraged to do so through the charity’s store.
The Royal British Legion also encourages people to donate money for the poppy items they resell to the charity. This is possible directly through the company, and individuals will see the “eBay for charity” logo on all listings where a percentage goes to a charity.
The final poppy was placed at the Tower of London today. From tomorrow, they will be removed slowly. However, two important parts—The Wave and The Weeping Window—will remain until the end of the month. All poppies will be sent to their respective owners over the course of the next two months, and all buyers will receive their ceramic poppies by the end of January. It took months for the completion of the project, which officially started on July 17.
While there are no more ceramic poppies left to purchase, there are other official poppy products. These official products can be bought through the official stores, but eBay has announced that the ceramic Tower of London poppies cannot be sold on the site.
By Alexandria Ingham