REMEMBRANCE DAY 11 November, 2009
What is Remembrance Day? • At 11 o’clock, on the 11th November, the nation stops to remember those who fought for our freedom during the two World Wars and those who have lost their lives in more recent conflicts. • 11 November 1918 signaled the end of The Great War; the Armistice between the Allies and Germany came into effect. Since 1921, the nation has come together to remember the sacrifices that hundreds of thousands of British and Commonwealth Service men and women have made.
It is a special day set aside to remember all those men and women who were killed during the two World Wars and other conflicts. At one time the day was known as Armistice Day and was renamed Remembrance Day after the second World War.
Remembrance Day and the Two Minute Silence have been observed since the end of the First World War. • Today, with troops on duty in Afghanistan and other trouble spots around the world, Remembrance, and this two minute tribute are as important as ever.
What happens on Remembrance Day? • A national ceremony takes place at the Cenotaph in Whitehall, London. The Queen lays the first wreath at the Cenotaph. • Wreaths are placed beside war memorials by companies, clubs and societies. People also leave small wooden crosses by the memorials in remembrance of a family member who died in war.
The "Last Post" is traditionally played to introduce the two minute silence in Remembrance Day ceremonies. It is usually played on a bugle. (In military life, 'The Last Post' marks the end of the day and the final farewell.) • The sounding of "Reveille” by bugle ends the two minute silence, followed by the recitation of the poem "Ode of Remembrance”, a section of a poem taken from Laurence Binyon'sFor the Fallen, first published in The Times in September 1914.
Why poppies? Flanders is the name of the whole western part of Belgium. It saw some of the most concentrated and bloodiest fighting of the First World War. There was complete devastation.
Buildings, roads, trees and natural life simply disappeared. Where once there were homes and farms there was now a sea of mud - a grave for the dead where men still lived and fought.
Only one other living thing survived. The poppy flowering each year with the coming of the warm weather, brought life, hope, color and reassurance to those still fighting.
In 1918, Moira Michael, an American, wrote a poem in reply, 'We shall keep the faith', in which she promised to wear a poppy ‘in honor of our dead’. This began the tradition of wearing a poppy in remembrance.
When was the first Poppy Day? • The first actual Poppy Day was held in Britain on November 11th, 1921 and was a national success raising £106,000. Since then, during every November, we keep the memory alive by wearing a poppy to commemorate those who sacrificed their lives during war.
This man represents just one of the reasons why we have Remembrance Day…
Citation: • http://www.woodlands-junior.kent.sch.uk/CUSTOMS/remembrance/poppy.htm • googleimages.com • http://www.poppy.org.uk/