Remembrance Sunday

Discussion in 'Old & Bold' started by Auld-Yin, Nov 8, 2010.

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  1. Auld-Yin

    Auld-Yin LE Reviewer Book Reviewer Reviews Editor

    With this important day coming up I have been thinking back to the parades and piss-ups that followed.

    One thing that seemed to stick is that when I was regular we had a parade on 11/11 unless it was at a weekend. After the parade it was just back to work. The parade itself was not a 100% and many functions just carried on with everyone stopping what they were doing at 11 am. Even poppies were a part of day to day. First parade of the poppy wearing season (usually closest to 1st November) on Company muster poppies were issued and money extracted for said poppy. The CQMS had a box of poppies in his store, with a collection tin, for those who lost theirs. But it all seemed to be just part of routine - maybe I was too young then :)

    When I joined the TA I found that it was a major event in the Battalion and a major social event with lots of former members returning for beer and sandwiches. In fact I was caught out by my first one as I drove there - mug. Got the wife to drive me to and collect from subsequent ones! :)

    This is not in any way a complaint or request for the Outrage Bus to be signed out from the museum but just a reflection on how both sides of the one-army approached things. I have to say I am talking from mid 60s to early 80s.

    It would be interesting to hear how others, especially regular units, dealt with Remembrance.

    Nowadays I tend to view the weekend as a TV event with my participation being personal. Like Trooping the Colour, the service from the Albert Hall on Saturday night and the Cenotaph ceremony are required viewing every year.
  2. As a regular through the sixties, in various units, I don't recall the 11/11 being marked at all. For us it was always the Remembrance Sunday parade.

    As a young lad, I remember most of the country coming to a stand-still for the silence on Remembrance Sunday, usually triggered by a maroon fired from the police station roof.

    Before the war, on the 11th, the silence was even more universally observed, buses cars and trains would stop and drivers dismount, and even a pilot was once fined for disturbing the silence.

    As I understand it, Formal Armistice day parades on the 11th were ceased at the beginning of hostilities to avoid impeding the war effort When they resumed, circa 1945, it was decided that the marking of Armistice would be moved to the nearest Sunday, Remembrance Sunday, not least of all because it had become a busier world, making a weekday silence harder to mark.

    Personally, I wasn't in favour of the move in recent years to bring back the silence on the 11th, the general public is confused as to why there are now two periods of silence to observe, that on the Sunday and on the 11th (if different of course). Plus the fact that when it isn't universally observed on the 11th, it tends to bring out the outrage bus
  3. For some reason, Remembrance Sunday and buying poppies became more important after I left the regular Army. No idea why!

    I was based in Woolwich for three years and I was on all of the Remembrance Sunday parades at Wellington Arch. Each time, I felt immense pride in being able to be there and there really is something, in watching Hyde Park Corner come to a complete standstill!