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Millions of Britons stay home on Memorial Sunday while commemorations go online


The Queen, Prince Charles and Prime Minister Boris Johnson lead politicians and kings who pay tribute to Britain's war dead today at the cenotaph.

The annual Sunday memorial service will be held this morning but the public will not be able to attend due to lockdown restrictions due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Millions of people across the UK will instead pay their respects in the privacy of their homes.

Around 10,000 veterans would normally pay their respects at the cenotaph, but this year there are only 26 due to the risks posed by Covid-19.

In addition to Mr Johnson and Sir Keir, former Prime Ministers David Cameron, Tony Blair and Theresa May, Chancellor Rishi Sunak and the leader of the Liberal Democrats Sir Ed Davey were also pictured en route to the cenotaph.

As the clock struck 11 a.m., Mr Johnson, Prince Charles, Prince William and other members of the British elite marked the two-minute silence before laying their wreaths.

Prior to today's service, Prime Minister Boris Johnson had said "no virus can stop us" from remembering the country's war dead as he paid his respects at a low profile Saturday at the Uxbridge War Memorial in west London.

The Queen, Prince Charles and Prime Minister Boris Johnson lead politicians and kings who pay their respects to Britain's war dead today at the cenotaph

Prince Charles was depicted with a face mask on as he traveled to the cenotaph before the service this morning

Prince Charles was depicted wearing a face mask as he traveled to the cenotaph before the service this morning

Today's Sunday memorial service is taking place but the UK public cannot attend as usual due to the coronavirus pandemic

Today's Sunday memorial service is taking place but the UK public cannot attend as usual due to the coronavirus pandemic

Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Labor Leader Sir Keir Starmer were among the members of Britain's political elite who arrived for today's Sunday service at the Whitehall cenotaph

Sir Keir Starmer is going to the cenotaph this morning

Prime Minister Boris Johnson and union leader Sir Keir Starmer were among the members of Britain's political elite who arrived for today's Sunday service at the Whitehall cenotaph

Around 10,000 veterans would normally pay their respects at the cenotaph, but this year there are only 26 due to the risks posed by Covid-19

Around 10,000 veterans would normally pay their respects at the cenotaph, but this year there are only 26 due to the risks posed by Covid-19

The annual Sunday memorial service will be held this morning but the public will not be able to attend due to lockdown restrictions due to the coronavirus pandemic

The annual Sunday memorial service will be held this morning but the public will not be able to attend due to lockdown restrictions due to the coronavirus pandemic

He said: “We come together every November to remember the soldiers and women from Britain and the Commonwealth who gave their lives for our freedom.

“During this difficult time, no virus can stop us from honoring her memory, especially when we have just celebrated the 75th anniversary of Victory in World War II.

“And our honors are even more important in times of trial. So let's get together again and remember those to whom we owe so much. & # 39;

In a video message prior to attending the Memorial Sunday service, union leader Sir Keir Starmer said: “2020 has been a year of struggle and sacrifice and we know that many challenges lie ahead.

“But in these troubled times, when we need inspiration, we can always look with pride, not just on our war generations or those currently serving our nation at home and abroad, but on all of our soldiers and women who served during this pandemic have stood side by side with our key workers in the fight against this virus.

“On this special Memorial Sunday, celebrating 80 years since the Battle of Britain and 75 years since the end of World War II, we would like to thank everyone who has served and everyone who continues to serve this great country. & # 39;

Sir Kier was pictured walking down Downing Street down Downing Street along with Mr Johnson, Chancellor Rishi Sunak, former Prime Ministers Tony Blair and David Cameron, Liberal Democrat leader Sir Ed Davey and the leader of the SNP in the House of Commons Sir Ian Blackford On Sunday.

Union leader Sir Keir Starmer and his predecessor, former Prime Minister Tony Blair, walk down Downing Street to the cenotaph ahead of today's ceremony

Mr. Blair wore a face mask

Past and present: Union leader Sir Keir Starmer and his predecessor, former Prime Minister Tony Blair, walk down Downing Street to the cenotaph ahead of today's ceremony

Ahead of today's Sunday service, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said "no virus can stop us" remembering the country's war dead as he paid his respects at a low-key event on Saturday at the Uxbridge War Memorial in west London

Ahead of today's Sunday service, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said "no virus can stop us" remembering the country's war dead as he paid his respects at a low-key event on Saturday at the Uxbridge War Memorial in west London

In a video message prior to attending the Memorial Sunday service, union leader Sir Keir Starmer said, “2020 has been a year of struggle and sacrifice and we know that many challenges lie ahead

In a video message prior to attending the Memorial Sunday service, union leader Sir Keir Starmer said, “2020 has been a year of struggle and sacrifice and we know that many challenges lie ahead

She pays her respects: The Dean of Westminster Abbey David Hoyle (right) watches as the Queen's Equerry, Lieutenant Colonel Nana Kofi Twumasi-Ankrah, places a bouquet of flowers at the tomb of the Unknown Warrior in front of the Queen in Westminster Abbey

She pays her respects: The Dean of Westminster Abbey David Hoyle (right) watches as the Queen's Equerry, Lieutenant Colonel Nana Kofi Twumasi-Ankrah, lays a bouquet of flowers at the tomb of the Unknown Warrior in front of the Queen in Westminster Abbey

Although the public will not be able to attend today's ceremony, the event will be broadcast live on multiple channels, with attendees encouraged to partake in the two-minute silence at home. Pictured: Ronnie Wilson, Scottish World War II veteran

Cathy Drummond, Women's Auxiliary Air Force Veteran, at her home in Scotland

Although the public will not be able to attend today's ceremony, the event will be broadcast live on multiple channels, with attendees encouraged to partake in the two-minute silence at home. Pictured: Scottish World War II veterans Ronnie Wilson (left) and Cathy Drummond pose with their war medals in front of their homes ahead of Sunday's commemorations

How to get involved in Memorial Sunday

Although this year's memorial service at the cenotaph is closed to the public, the government says there are many ways to get involved.

People have been invited to share their personal and family stories on social media using the hashtag #WeWillRememberThem.

You are also invited to pay homage to the Royal British Legion's virtual memorial box or the Commonwealth War Graves Commission's memorial wall.

Brits can also watch the Sunday cenotaph service on TV and online

Other ways to get involved are:

  • Support the poppy seed appeal by donating by mail and displaying your own poppy seed or reminder window.
  • Have a small memorial service in your yard or write reminders for veterans or servants.
  • Look up your own family history on Ancestry. The company gave them access to this year's commemorations.
  • The Royal Air Force Museum is asking people to write poetry to get into its online gallery.

The Queen and members of the royal family are expected to join the country in commemorating the nation's war dead at the cenotaph.

Among those expected are the Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall, as well as the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.

The Duke of Sussex resigned as a working member of the royal family and now lives in California.

In a commemorative Sunday podcast, the former army officer said: “To be able to wear my uniform, to be in the service of one's own country, is one of the greatest honors in life.

“For me, the uniform is a symbol of something much bigger, a symbol of our commitment to protecting our country and protecting our values.

"These values ​​are put into action through service, and service is what happens in silence and chaos."

In a brief ceremony at Westminster Abbey on Wednesday, the Queen commemorated the 100th anniversary of the funeral of the Unknown Warrior who represents World War I soldiers whose place of death is unknown or whose remains have not been identified.

The 94-year-old monarch had requested the service – her first public engagement in London since March – after being advised to celebrate the warrior's 100th birthday next week, to be attended by the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall. If you do not participate in an abbey service, you will join on November 11th, Armistice Day.

People are encouraged to attend memorial services on Sunday by sharing family stories, personal stories and reminder messages online using the hashtag £ WeWillRememberThem.

Meanwhile, genealogy company Ancestry made more than a billion British war records freely available over the weekend for people to discover the role of their families in WWI and WWII.

Approximately 150 Royal Navy, Army and Royal Air Force personnel will attend the cenotaph, with musicians from all three services to play traditional music for the service, including the Last Post, which is played by Buglers of the Royal Marines.

The leader of the Liberal Democrats, Sir Ed Davey, was also pictured en route to the cenotaph

Sir Ian Blackford, Chairman of the SNP House of Commons

Liberal Democrat leader Sir Ed Davey was also pictured en route to the cenotaph along with the leader of the House of Commons of the SNP, Sir Ian Blackford

Prince Harry attends the West Point Military Academy in America in 2010

In 2012, Prince Harry crawled with his Apache during his 12-hour shift on the UK-controlled airline at Camp Bastion in southern Afghanistan

Prince Harry, who had spent 10 years in the armed forces, described the day as a "moment of respect and hope" in an interview with the shared podcast

The WWII veteran remembers his fallen comrades on his doorstep

A 96-year-old veteran remembered the fallen soldiers on his doorstep in Birmingham, West Midlands.

Ned Redmond joined the British Army in 1944 and served in the Far East during World War II.

The great-grandfather of four was a sergeant in the Middlesex Regiment and fought in the Korean War.

World War II veteran Ned Redmond, 96, has thought of his fallen comrades on his doorstep

World War II veteran Ned Redmond, 96, has thought of his fallen comrades on his doorstep

He was one of the first to get off the boat in 1950.

In recent years he has returned to South Korea as a guest speaker.

Ned – who lives independently – will pay his respects on November 8th.

He encourages others to remember the heroes by standing on their doorstep for two minutes.

Dublin-born Ned said, “When I look back on everything I've done, I'm proud.

He joined the British Army in 1944 and served in the Far East during World War II

He joined the British Army in 1944 and served in the Far East during World War II

& # 39; It's hard to describe how difficult Korea was.

“We were on the front lines every day and lost a lot of good men – many of whom were good friends.

“We were without a shower for months and we were covered with lice.

"It was horrible, but I am happy and happy that I survived it."

Defense Secretary Ben Wallace said: "Many of the men and women who are in the parade today have already taken part in efforts to fight the coronavirus and many more will do so in the coming weeks.

"I applaud your selflessness."

On the occasion of Memorial Sunday, members of the public were invited to share their family stories and memorial messages online using the hashtag #WeWillRememberThem.

Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden said: "While this year's service is a little different than normal, I encourage everyone to get involved from home – watch TV on your television, do your family history research – but most importantly, be safe."

The memorial services come after the former chief of the Lord of the Royal Navy, West of Spithead, launched a backlash against a ban on church services and warned veterans Get pneumonia by being forced to stand outside.

Coronavirus lockdown restrictions in winter mean that most church services are banned and anyone caught visiting could face a £ 200 fine.

John & # 39; Paddy & # 39; Hemingway, the 101-year-old last survivor of the Battle of Britain, is said to be upset by the move.

His son Brian Hemingway said the veteran was "sad" that people couldn't get together on Sunday.

However, the growing turmoil from former senior military officials and former Defense Secretary Michael Fallon has led to calls for an exemption so that the day can be properly remembered.

Lord West of Spithead, the former First Sea Lord, told The Telegraph, “If you look at the average size of a church, there has to be a way to let veterans in with social distancing.

“It seems very stupid to leave them outside in the freezing cold season. This puts them at greater risk. You are more likely to die from pneumonia than from Covid. & # 39;

The Royal British Legion previously confirmed that there will be no annual March Past the Cenotaph.

On its website, the charity said it recognized the decision was "deeply disappointing," adding that it was made on the recommendation of the government.

Government guidance enables local authorities in England to organize events at a "public war memorial or cenotaph" as long as they are outdoors, brief and those present adhere to social distancing measures.

Former Prime Minister Theresa May also criticized the decision to ban church services.

She told the House of Commons: “The Covid-safe reminder service at Worcester Cathedral is now being converted to a recorded online service.

"Surely the men and women who gave up their lives for our freedom deserve better than that?"

Former Secretary of Defense Sir Michael Fallon said, "Veterans are perfectly capable of social distancing and wearing face masks for half an hour, and I hope the government will reconsider." It seems ridiculous. We trusted veterans to risk their lives for the country, but we cannot trust them to stand two meters apart in church. & # 39;

Several members of the House of Lords raised concerns about the impact of the move on people's mental health, pointing out that for many older people, attending church was their only regular social activity.

Parish Minister Lord Greenhalgh defended the rule, saying: "We have reached a critical point in the fight against Covid-19."

He stressed the need to "limit our interaction with others" and said: "It is with great regret that services cannot take place at this time, although the places of worship remain open for individual prayer."

Tory peer Lord Cormack squeezed the minister, saying he had "provided no evidence as to why churches shouldn't be open to public worship".

He said a memorial service has been scheduled for that Sunday at Lincoln Cathedral, which will be "a huge space where everyone can be appropriately socially distanced."

Lord Cormack added, “Instead, the government has come up with a stupid answer – that the veterans, all 90 and over, can stand in the cold and rain, but cannot go to a safe, socially distant cathedral.

"That's a shame."

The cenotaph was usually manned by members of the armed forces, veterans, and ordinary British people on Memorial Sunday

The cenotaph was usually manned by members of the armed forces, veterans, and ordinary British people on Memorial Sunday

The Queen wears a face mask for the first time in public as she celebrates 100 years of the Unknown Warrior at Westminster Abbey

By Bridie Pearson-Jones and Jack Wright for MailOnline

The Queen wore a face mask for the first time in public last week as she celebrated the 100th anniversary of the Unknown Warrior's funeral in a small private ceremony at Westminster Abbey.

Her Majesty, 94, paid tribute to the British soldier, whose identity remains a mystery, and the royal family's own connections to World War I at the London Abbey ahead of Memorial Sunday.

The head of state, dressed all in black when she laid a bouquet of orchids and myrtles on the grave, had to cover her face during the service under government restrictions.

It reflected the custom of placing royal bridal bouquets on the grave, a tradition that began in 1923 when Lady Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon, the future Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother, laid her bouquet as she opened the abbey in memory of her brother Fergus entered. who was killed in the Battle of Loos in 1915.

Many royal brides have since sent their bouquets to the grave of Westminster Abbey.

Before her death in 2002, the Queen Mother also asked to place her funeral wreath on the grave of the Unknown Warrior – a wish that was granted the day after her funeral at the abbey.

Tribute: The Queen commemorates the 100th anniversary of the Unknown Warrior, an unknown British soldier who died in the First World War at Westminster Abbey on Wednesday

Tribute: The Queen commemorates the 100th anniversary of the Unknown Warrior, an unknown British soldier who died in World War I at Westminster Abbey on Wednesday

Paying their respects: The Dean of Westminster Abbey, David Hoyle (right), watches as the Queen's Equerry, Lieutenant Colonel Nana Kofi Twumasi-Ankrah, places a bouquet of flowers at the tomb of the Unknown Warrior in front of the Queen in Westminster Abbey

She pays her respects: The Dean of Westminster Abbey David Hoyle (right) watches as the Queen's Equerry, Lieutenant Colonel Nana Kofi Twumasi-Ankrah, lays a bouquet of flowers at the tomb of the Unknown Warrior in front of the Queen in Westminster Abbey

Commemoration: The Queen inspects a bouquet of flowers that Equerry, Lieutenant Colonel Nana Kofi Twumasi-Ankrah, is supposed to place at the tomb of the Unknown Warrior

Commemoration: The Queen inspects a bouquet of flowers that Equerry, Lieutenant Colonel Nana Kofi Twumasi-Ankrah, is asked to place at the tomb of the Unknown Warrior

Paying your respects: The 94-year-old Queen traveled by car from Windsor Castle to London to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Unknown Warrior, according to the Court's circular. The Queen was photographed leaving Windsor Castle yesterday (pictured) before returning two hours later, but the reason for the trip was not disclosed

Pay her respects: The 94-year-old Queen drove from Windsor Castle to London to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Unknown Warrior, according to the court's circular. The Queen was photographed leaving Windsor Castle yesterday (pictured) before returning two hours later, but the reason for the trip was not disclosed

Tribute: Lt. Col. Nana Kofi Twumasi-Ankrah lays a bouquet of flowers on the grave of the Unknown Warrior during a ceremony at Westminster Abbey

Tribute: Lt. Col. Nana Kofi Twumasi-Ankrah lays a bouquet of flowers on the grave of the Unknown Warrior during a ceremony at Westminster Abbey

Paying respects: The Queen's Equerry, Lieutenant Colonel Nana Kofi Twumasi-Ankrah, lays a bouquet of flowers on the grave of the Unknown Warrior on behalf of the Queen during a ceremony at Westminster Abbey

Paying respects: The Queen's Equerry, Lieutenant Colonel Nana Kofi Twumasi-Ankrah, lays a bouquet of flowers on the grave of the Unknown Warrior on behalf of the Queen during a ceremony at Westminster Abbey

Tribute: The Queen inspects a bouquet that her Equerry placed on her behalf at the Tomb of the Unknown Warrior

Tribute: The Queen inspects a bouquet that her Equerry placed on her behalf at the Tomb of the Unknown Warrior

What royal bridal bouquets were placed on the grave of the unknown warrior?

  • The Queen Mother, 1923
  • The Queen, 1947
  • Princess Margaret, 1960
  • Princess Alexandra, 1963
  • The Princess Royal, 1973
  • Diana, Princess of Wales, 1981
  • Sarah, Duchess of York, 1986
  • The Countess of Wessex, 1999
  • The Duchess of Cornwall, 2005
  • The Duchess of Cambridge, 2011
  • The Duchess of Sussex, 2018
  • Princess Eugenie, 2018
  • Princess Beatrice, 2020

During this week's ceremony, Her Majesty also spoke to the Dean of Westminster in prayers and a moment of reflection after the bouquet was laid on the grave before the Queen's Piper played a suit, The Flowers of the Forest.

The Tomb of the Unknown Warrior is the final resting place of an unknown British soldier who died on the battlefields during World War I. The soldier's body was brought from northern France and buried in Westminster Abbey on November 11, 1920 after a procession through Whitehall.

The Queen's grandfather, King George V, placed a wreath on the coffin at the cenotaph that was unveiled on the processional route.

His Majesty later dropped a handful of soil from France on the soldier's coffin as the soldier was lowered into the abbey grave.

He was accompanied to the funeral by his son, future King George VI.

The unknown warrior became an important symbol of mourning for the bereaved and represented all those who had lost their lives in the First World War, but whose place of death was unknown or whose bodies remained unknown. It remains a solemn tribute to all service employees who lost their lives in the battle.

The Queen was photographed leaving Windsor Castle on Wednesday before returning two hours later. It is believed that she is now self-isolating with husband Prince Philip, 99.

She looked somber in a black ensemble that was normally only worn during mourning, at a funeral, or during Memorial Day and Sunday services.

The November 4th Judicial Circular reads: “The Queen this morning commemorated the 100th anniversary of the burial of the Unknown Warrior at Westminster Abbey, London SW1, and was welcomed by the Dean of Westminster (the very venerable Dr. David Hoyle) on the Great West Door received). & # 39;

The Queen

The Queen's Equerry, Lieutenant Colonel Nana Kofi Twumasi-Ankrah

Tribut: Die Königin würdigt den unbekannten Krieger, während ihr Equerry, Oberstleutnant Nana Kofi Twumasi-Ankrah, einen Blumenstrauß trägt, den er an sein Grab legen kann

Tribut: Der unbekannte Soldat wurde am 11. November 1920 in der Westminster Abbey beigesetzt. Aufgrund von Sperrbeschränkungen mussten jedoch im Voraus Gedenkfeiern stattfinden. Datei Bild

Tribut: Der unbekannte Soldat wurde am 11. November 1920 in der Westminster Abbey beigesetzt. Aufgrund von Sperrbeschränkungen mussten jedoch im Voraus Gedenkfeiern stattfinden. Datei Bild

The Queen's Piper spielt während einer Zeremonie in der Londoner Westminster Abbey, an der die Queen letzte Woche teilnahm

The Queen's Piper spielt während einer Zeremonie in der Londoner Westminster Abbey, an der die Queen letzte Woche teilnahm

Königliche Gedenkfeiern: Die Herzogin von Cornwall hat gestern auch eine Verlobung in der Westminster Abbey durchgeführt und sich dafür eingesetzt, dass Prinz Harry das Feld der Erinnerung besucht

Königliche Gedenkfeiern: Die Herzogin von Cornwall hat gestern auch eine Verlobung in der Westminster Abbey durchgeführt und sich dafür eingesetzt, dass Prinz Harry das Feld der Erinnerung besucht

Camilla, 73, trug eine Mohn-Gesichtsmaske und ehrte die Soldaten und Frauen, die ihr Leben für ihr Land opferten, und stand in feierlichem Schweigen, als der letzte Beitrag gespielt wurde

Camilla, 73, trug eine Mohn-Gesichtsmaske und ehrte die Soldaten und Frauen, die ihr Leben für ihr Land opferten, und stand in feierlichem Schweigen, als der letzte Beitrag gespielt wurde

Diese Tradition wurde erstmals von der Königinmutter vervollständigt, als sie 1923 König George VI heiratete. Dargestellt ist Prinzessin Beatrices Hochzeitsstrauß auf dem Grab Anfang dieses Jahres

Diese Tradition wurde erstmals von der Königinmutter vervollständigt, als sie 1923 König George VI heiratete. Abgebildet ist Prinzessin Beatrices Hochzeitsstrauß auf dem Grab Anfang dieses Jahres

König George V. würdigte den Unbekannten Krieger, als er 1920 am Kenotaph in der Londoner Whitehall einen Kranz auf den Sarg legte, der auf einem Waffenwagen montiert war

König George V. würdigte den Unbekannten Krieger, als er 1920 am Kenotaph in der Londoner Whitehall einen Kranz auf den Sarg legte, der auf einem Waffenwagen montiert war

Der Sarg des Unbekannten Kriegers, der vor der Bestattungszeremonie 1920 in der Westminster Abbey in London ruht

Der Sarg des Unbekannten Kriegers, der vor der Bestattungszeremonie 1920 in der Westminster Abbey in London ruht

Die Königin hat seit März nur eine Handvoll Verlobungen durchgeführt und wird voraussichtlich im nächsten Monat als sie und sie im Hintergrund bleiben Der 99-jährige Herzog von Edinburgh verbringt gemeinsam eine Sperre im Windsor Castle.

The Duchess of Cornwall also carried out an engagement at Westminster Abbey yesterday, standing in for Prince Harry to visit the Field of Remembrance.

She then stood in front of crosses from the Graves of the Unknown as the Dean offered prayers, before solemnly laying her own cross of remembrance and bowing her head in reflection.

A bugler played the Last Post, followed by a two-minute silence, and then Exhortation to Remembrance, as Big Ben chimed at 2pm.

Afterwards the duchess toured the 308 plots filled with more than 60,000 crosses and symbols of all faiths, laid by staff and volunteers, with Surgeon Rear Admiral Lionel Jarvis, President of The Poppy Factory.

Remembrance Sunday services, which are traditionally part of communal worship, cannot go ahead as planned on November 8 due to lockdown restrictions

However, rather than being banned entirely the Government has set out a series of guidelines for local authorities and faith leaders hoping to hold the services.

The coffin was laid in the ancient abbey ahead of its burial, two years after the end of the First World War

The coffin was laid in the ancient abbey ahead of its burial, two years after the end of the First World War

The burial ceremony of the Unknown Warrior in Westminster Abbey was attended by prominent politicians and members of the public

The burial ceremony of the Unknown Warrior in Westminster Abbey was attended by prominent politicians and members of the public

The warrior's coffin was carried into the Abbey by soldiers who were flanked by fellow military personnel ahead of the burial ceremony

The warrior's coffin was carried into the Abbey by soldiers who were flanked by fellow military personnel ahead of the burial ceremony

In 1981, the Princess of Wales's bridal bouquet was laid on to the grave of the Unknown warrior after her wedding to Prince Charles

In 1981, the Princess of Wales's bridal bouquet was laid on to the grave of the Unknown warrior after her wedding to Prince Charles

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