A world record was broken in Farnborough on Friday (May 2) as thousands of pupils and military personnel created a huge human poppy to commemorate the centenary of the start of the First World War.

A total of 2,250 students and staff from Farnborough Sixth Form College, along with children from other schools, charity members, guards, Gurkhas and military police officers and members of the community, gathered on the college playing fields in coloured overalls.

With a military helicopter circling to capture the visual effect from above, the group remained in formation for the required five minutes and beat the previous record for human flowers by 60 people.

The Guinness World Record team authorised commander at Aldershot Garrison Colonel Charlie Lambert and mayor of Rushmoor Terry Bridgeman to be official witnesses and there was a roar of delight when the record was confirmed.

Christine Eustace, director of community engagement at the college, said: "It was community effort, with people aged from 0-90 involved and all parts of the community represented.

"We just nicked the record in the end. It was amazing. When we got it there was a huge, huge scream."

Everyone who took part in the record attempt donated money to the Royal British Legion, with thousands of pounds expected to have been raised.

Jim France, area manager at RBL, congratulated those at the college on becoming record breakers.

"We are thrilled the team chose to create a giant human poppy, especially in this poignant year as the nation commemorates the centenary of the First World War," he said.

"We are also grateful to the generosity of local people in Farnborough who supported this event and gave donations."