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Remembrance Day

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Published 22/10/2020
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How did Remembrance Day start?

Since the battlefields of ‘The Great War’ fell silent in 1919, Britain along with many other countries in Europe and across the world, has paused for two minutes silence on the 11th hour, in the 11th month; November. This day was known as Armistice Day until 1956 when the British Government, in honour of participants in both World Wars, officially replaced Armistice Day with the new Sunday Memorial day, fixed as the second Sunday of the month, known as Remembrance Sunday.

Typically since then, countries observe the silence on the day, and again on Remembrance Sunday. The Sunday is often honoured with a Parade of Remembrance, usually culminating in a wreath laying Ceremony of Remembrance at the local Cenotaph or Memorial.

Is Remembrance Day cancelled this year?

For the first time in 100 years one of the most popular Remembrance wreath laying ceremonies in the world, at the Cenotaph in Whitehall, London, will be closed to the public. A closed ceremony will still take place for some officials and it is expected to be the same across the UK as Covid restrictions mean people are unable to gather in crowds to pay their respects. In spite of this, Remembrance Day is not cancelled, instead there is growing support for a nationwide ‘Doorstep Remembrance Sunday’ to honour the fallen.

How can I mark Remembrance Day this year?

Funeral-notices.co.uk are supporting the Mirror campaign for a Covid-safe Remembrance Sunday this year. The Mirror is appealing to the nation to remember the heroes of two world wars and other conflicts at 11am on 8th November by standing on their doorstep to observe the two minutes silence.

Military figures, celebrities and ‘forces sweetheart’ Katherine Jenkins have thrown their support behind the campaign in the hope it will unite us in honour of our nations’ veterans.

Evoking that famous wartime blitz spirit, Senior Army Official Colonel Simon Diggins told The Mirror: “This is a fabulous idea of the Mirror’s. Today, with this virus, we are once again facing the deprivation of liberties, the limitation on freedom of movement, the wearing of masks, and so on. I would like to think of that during Remembrance Sunday.”

Singer Katherine Jenkins, famous recently for singing ‘We’ll Meet Again’ with Dame Vera Lynn at the 60th Anniversary of VE Day, is a trustee of the British Forces Foundation. She told The Mirror: “I would urge everyone to stand on their doorstep on Remembrance Sunday to mark the two minutes’ silence.”
Sadly, Dame Vera Lynn passed away in June. The singer was always at the forefront of any services for Remembrance Day. As we approach the day this year, you may wish to pay your respects to Dame Vera here.

Please join us in supporting The Mirror Campaign by spreading the word to your family, friends and neighbours that Remembrance Day is not cancelled and we will come together as a nation in defiance of the pandemic by standing proudly on our doorsteps at 11am on Sunday 8th November.

For the latest story on the Mirror Campaign, visit their website here.

Further information on Remembrance Day and The Poppy Appeal may be found at britishlegion.org.uk
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