Remembrance Sunday 2021: When to observe a two-minute silence this weekend

This weekend will mark Remembrance Sunday in a week when the nation comes together to remember the sacrifices of our servicemen and women.

The day follows Remembrance Day (Armistice Day) on Thursday (November 11) which marks the end World War 1.

Remembrance Sunday falls on the second Sunday of November which this week falls on Sunday, November 14.

Services and parades are held across the country to remember and honour those who lost their lives in World War 1 and following conflicts.

As tradition, a two-minute silence is observed at 11am.

The first 2-minute silence in the UK was observed on November 11, 1919, celebrating the day the war ended one year prior.

King George V declared: “”All locomotion should cease, so that, in perfect stillness, the thoughts of everyone may be concentrated on reverent remembrance of the glorious dead.”

When do we observe the 2-minute silence?

The 2-minute silence is held on both Remembrance Day and Remembrance Sunday, after The Last Post is sounded.

It is held on November 11, commemorating the day the war ended in 1918. Many services on Sunday then hold the 2-minute silence again at cenotaphs, parades and public events. Both are at 11am.

What is the significance of 11am?

11am marks the time agreements were made that ended the first World War. The silence is held at the 11th hour on the 11th day of the 11th month.

Remembrance Day Poem, The Fallen

On Remembrance Day the fourth verse of Binyon’s poem For the Fallen is read.

It reads:

The Ode

“They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old;

“Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.

“At the going down of the sun and in the morning

“We will remember them.”

For the Fallen, by Lawrence Binyon in full

With proud thanksgiving, a mother for her children,

England mourns for her dead across the sea.

Flesh of her flesh they were, spirit of her spirit,

Fallen in the cause of the free.

Solemn the drums thrill: Death august and royal

Sings sorrow up into immortal spheres.

There is music in the midst of desolation

And a glory that shines upon our tears.

They went with songs to the battle, they were young,

Straight of limb, true of eye, steady and aglow.

They were staunch to the end against odds uncounted,

They fell with their faces to the foe.

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old;

Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.

At the going down of the sun and in the morning

We will remember them.

They mingle not with their laughing comrades again;

They sit no more at familiar tables at home;

They have no lot in our labour of the day-time;

They sleep beyond England’s foam.

But where our desires are and our hopes profound,

Felt as a well-spring that is hidden from sight,

To the innermost heart of their own land they are known

As the stars are known to the Night;

As the stars that shall be bright when we are dust,

Moving in marches upon the heavenly plain,

As the stars that are starry in the time of our darkness,

To the end, to the end, they remain.

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