Woman Gives Out Flowers To Strangers In The Street In Her Mother's Memory
Polly Collins, 39, from Louth in Lincolnshire, has begun handing out bunches of flowers to people she passes in the street, as he mother Lynn had done for six years before she passed away last week.
The tradition was started by Lynn when she would take a fresh bunch of flowers to her mother Betty's care home bedside each week, before she died in 2013 aged 84.
After her death, Lynn continued taking flowers to the care home for staff to distribute to patients. She even decided to hand them out in the streets of her hometown.
Lynn - who married husband Ken Hives on her sick bed - sadly lost her battle with cancer on 7th August, and since, her daughter Polly has been carrying on her sweet tradition.
The hairdresser says the gesture often leaves people in tears. "When you lose someone you want to keep a bit of them alive," she says. "This is my way of keeping my mum's memory alive.
"I used to get really embarrassed when she used to do it. But when I got past that embarrassment I thought that could make someone's day.
"It usually ends in tears. Happy tears - well I hope they are happy tears. People hug me and burst into tears. I had one lady try to give me them back the other day. She said I should have them for my mum, but I've got enough.
"I say to them 'can I give you these flowers in honour of my mum?' and I explain to them the story.
"One lady I gave a bunch of flowers to said her mum was really poorly at the minute and she was so grateful they had cheered her up so much."
Polly explained the story of her mother's tradition came about, saying: "When my grandma was in a care home, my mum used to take a bunch of flowers to her each week because she loved flowers.
"She would take them into the care home and leave them with staff to distribute to patients after my grandma died.
"They were never expensive flowers, she'd just pick up a bunch from the supermarket."
In 2015, Lynn wrote a Facebook status about why she does it, which ended up going viral. "She was so happy she had gone viral," says Polly.
"A few years ago she gave them to this lady but didn't explain the story. The lady wrote a letter to the local newspaper and asked if anyone knew what it was about.
"Mostly she did explain 'this is Betty's bunch, I can't buy my mum flowers so now I need to buy someone else flowers'."
Desperate to keep her mother's memory alive, Polly asked friends to carry on the tradition by passing on flowers to strangers in acts of kindness in a Facebook post that's been shared over 11,000 times.
"I have had random people message me saying it's a lovely thing to do. I've had so many messages I can't reply to everybody.
"My mum would be well chuffed by all this - she always wanted to go viral.
"Her husband Ken thinks it's wonderful, it keeps mum's memory alive."
What a lovely idea.
Featured Image Credit: SWNS