Armistice Day two-minute silence to remember end of First World War

People across the UK are set to fall silent to mark Armistice Day on Friday – as the Foreign Secretary condemns Russia for bringing bloodshed back to Europe.

Poignant services will be held across the country for the anniversary of the end of the First World War and a two-minute silence will be observed at 11am to remember those who have died in military conflicts.

The Duke and Duchess of Gloucester are due to attend the National Memorial Arboretum Armistice Day Service in Staffordshire and services are also being held in London, Edinburgh, Belfast and Portsmouth.

In Edinburgh, the city’s depute lord provost, councillor Lezley Marion Cameron, will join veterans, serving personnel and the public to pay tribute at the city’s Garden of Remembrance.

The short open-air service led by Legion Scotland National Padre Rev Dr Karen Campbell will be followed by the laying of wreaths before the One O’Clock Gun fires at 11am from Edinburgh Castle.

Foreign Secretary James Cleverly will attend a remembrance service hosted by French President Emmanuel Macron in Paris.

Mr Cleverly said: “Since 1918 we have marked Armistice Day and paid tribute to the brave men and women who have served to give us peace.

“Yet as we salute our troops this year, this peace has been shattered by a Russian aggressor.

“As we honour the war dead of the past, we also remember Ukraine’s fight for freedom today.

“The UK stands steadfast with our friends and allies in defence of freedom and democracy in Ukraine and I am proud to stand shoulder to shoulder with an historic ally in Paris today.”

Armistice Day 2022
A man looks at messages and crosses on display at the Field of Remembrance ahead of a service at Westminster Abbey in London (Victoria Jones/PA)

Mr Cleverly will also meet with French foreign minister Catherine Colonna.

They are expected to discuss the two countries’ support for Ukraine, joint work to improve energy security and illegal migration, the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office said.

They will also discuss preparations for next year’s UK-France summit, it added.

The Armistice was signed between the Allies and Germany in a railway carriage in the forest of Compiegne to end the First World War in 1918.