Remembrance Day 2021: Armistice silence, the Poppy Appeal and Remembrance Sunday events explained

·4-min read
Remembrance Day 2021: Armistice silence, the Poppy Appeal and Remembrance Sunday events explained

This weekend marks Remembrance Sunday, when people across the UK honour those who have lost their lives in war.

Millions of red poppies are sold each year in the build-up to the day to commemorate the war dead, while the nation fell silent at 11am in tribute.

Remembrance Sunday is always held on the second Sunday in November, while Armistice Day is always held on the eleventh day of the eleventh month to commemorate the signing of the armistice.

Here is everything you need to know.

What is Remembrance Day?

Remembrance Day is a national day of memorial to remember and honour service men and women who lost their lives in WW1.

A two-minute silence is held at 11am on November 11, which marks the day the armistice was signed between the Allies and Germany that brought the end of WW1.


It was a tradition first started by King George V in 1919, and initially called Armistice Day.

The armistice took place on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month in 1918, which is why the UK holds two minutes of silence at 11am every November 11.

It was signed in Compiegne in Northern France and forced Germans to evacuate invaded countries within a two-week period.

 (PA Archive/PA Images)
(PA Archive/PA Images)

However, after the outbreak of WW2, many countries changed the name of this day, with some members of the Commonwealth choosing to call it Remembrance Day. In the UK, it is now known as both.

In the UK, Remembrance Sunday is held on the Sunday nearest to Armistice Day and marked by ceremonies at war memorial across the country.

A National Service of Remembrance, which is attended by members of the Royal Family, the Government and representatives from the armed forces, is held at 11am at The Cenotaph in Whitehall.

The Royal Marine buglers signal the start of the silence by playing The Last Post and The Rouse, and it is ended by a gun salute by the Royal Horse Artillery.


When is Armistice Day and Remembrance Sunday?

This year, Remembrance Sunday falls on Sunday, November 14.

Armistice Day is on Thursday, November 11.

What time is the two-minute silence?

The two minute silence was held at 11am.

What is the Poppy Appeal?

 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

In the lead-up to Remembrance Day, you will see veterans all over the country selling poppies.

The reason the poppies are worn is because they are the flowers which grew on the battlefields after WW1 ended.

The Royal British Legion is the charity which runs the poppy appeal each year and it gives the money to the service women and men who are still alive and whose lives have been changed by war.

Thousands of people in the pasted opted for white poppies over the traditional red.

What Remembrance Day and Remembrance Sunday events are happening?

The Remembrance Sunday Cenotaph Service takes place at 11am on Sunday, November 14.

For Remembrance Day events in your area, visit the British Legion.

On Sunday 14 November, the National Service of Remembrance will be held at the Cenotaph on Whitehall, London.

Starting at 11am, the service will commemorate the contribution of British and Commonwealth military and civilian servicemen and women involved in the two World Wars and later conflicts.

Here are the order of the events:

  • 08:00: Whitehall opens to the public. The public is advised that space is limited. Please allow time to clear the police security procedures and you are advised not to bring large bags.

  • 09:00: The Royal British Legion (TRBL) detachments form up on Horse Guards Parade and in Whitehall.

  • From 10:30: All detachments form up on the Cenotaph.

  • From 10:50: Participants process out onto the Cenotaph.

  • 11:00: National two minutes silence marked by the firing of guns from King’s Troop on Horse Guards Parade. Cenotaph Service commences.

  • 11:25: Cenotaph Service concludes and The Royal British Legion detachments disperse past the Cenotaph.

Do I need tickets to attend the Remembrance Sunday events?

  • No tickets or passes are needed for the event and the public are welcome to watch the ceremony from the pavements along Whitehall and Parliament Street. However, entry may be limited if the area becomes full.

  • There will be video screens north of the Cenotaph, near the green outside the main Ministry of Defence building and outside the Scotland Office and south of the Cenotaph on the corner of King Charles Street.

Read More

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Remembrance Day: What time is the silence and how many minutes is it?

Poppy Appeal: Why do people wear red, white and purple poppies?

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