This Sunday, the 11th of November, will be Armistice Day and Remembrance Day. So we’d like to highlight the importance of these days and take a moment to reflect on the past and the present.
What is Armistice Day and Remembrance Day?
Armistice Day commemorates the day that World War One ended. It honours the armistice signed between the Allies and Germany which took place on 11am on the 11th day of November in 1918 and finally stopped the fighting that raged across the world. Remembrance Day, which also commemorates the lives lost in this War, is held on the second Sunday in November, which is why both days fall on Sunday this year.
A two-minute silence is held at 11am to remember those who died in the First World War and all the other wars that came after. The first two-minute silence was held in Britain on 11th November 1919, a year after WWI ended, when King George V issued a proclamation to the public calling for a two-minute silence to remember those who had lost their lives. Many bow their head and close their eyes during these minutes and spend time reflecting and respecting those who have sacrificed their lives for their country.
Why are Poppies Significant?
In the week before Armistice Day and Remembrance Sunday, you’ll find poppies being sold by volunteers all over the country. Poppies have become a symbol of remembrance because they were the flowers that grew on the battlefields after WWI ended. They are bought and worn by millions across the country every year.
The Poppy Appeal is the Royal British Legion’s biggest fundraising campaign which is held every November. You can donate to The Poppy Appeal by visiting their website. Donations will go towards supporting those who are in need within the Armed Forces community.
A Time to Reflect
2018 marks the 100 year anniversary of the end of WWI. This Sunday, we ask that you put your own life in perspective as you reflect on the terrible effects of war. There are still many parts of the world afflicted by war and conflict today, and Remembrance Day is the perfect opportunity to remind oneself that we are fortunate to live in a peaceful Britain.
We’d like to end this blog with a poem to help you reflect on the past and present as Sunday arrives:
In Flanders Fields by John McCrae
In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie,
In Flanders fields.
Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.