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Every year on the second Sunday of November, Remembrance Sunday is observed to pay tribute to those who lost their lives in war.
In 2023, it will fall on the day after Armistice Day, which falls on Saturday, November 11th. This day is dedicated to honoring the signing of the ceasefire agreement that ended the First World War at 11am on November 11th, 1918. This event paved the way for peace negotiations, which were ultimately finalized with the signing of the Treaty of Versailles the following June.
In the UK, there are two dates dedicated to remembering those who have sacrificed their lives in service of their country. These dates are commemorated through ceremonies held nationwide. The poppy, sold by the Royal British Legion since 1921, is a well-known symbol of this remembrance and serves as a way to raise funds for current servicemen and women. It is often worn on the lapel as a sign of respect.
On Armistice Day, the annual Festival of Remembrance takes place at the Royal Albert Hall, which will be broadcast on BBC One at 9pm and feature classical music, patriotic readings and recitals and a spectacular display of military pageantry from the historic Kensington auditorium.
The RBL states that the upcoming event will honor the two million National Servicemen who served between the post-war years and 1963.
“Many lives were lost, especially during the Korean War, and we commemorate 70 years since the end of the conflict. We also recognize the significant impact of the Windrush Generation, 75 years after the arrival of HMT Empire Windrush, which represented the Caribbean immigrants who aided in rebuilding Britain. We pay tribute to those who fought in the Battle of the Atlantic 80 years ago, the longest campaign of World War II.”
The complete program schedule is available for viewing here.
On Remembrance Sunday, the main ceremony is the televised National Service of Remembrance. This includes a procession of veterans in formal attire through central London, as well as the royal family, prime minister, opposition leader, Cabinet members, London mayor, and other important figures laying flower wreaths at the Cenotaph in Whitehall to honor those who have died in service.
According to the RBL, the service serves as a physical memorial to honor and remember all those who have served and made sacrifices. It includes representation of British and Commonwealth military personnel, as well as members of emergency services and civilians, making sure that nobody is left behind.
The 2023 Legion’s Order of March can be found here, and additional details about the service and its schedule can be accessed on the UK government’s website here.
On Sunday, a significant ceremony will take place at the National Memorial Arboretum in Alrewas, located near Lichfield in Staffordshire. For more information, please visit the provided link.
Numerous events, including services, ceremonies, performances, and marches, will be held in various towns and cities throughout the country on Remembrance Sunday. At 11am, a two-minute moment of silence will be observed nationwide.
To find out about events happening in your vicinity, please refer to your community’s schedule.
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