When is Remembrance Day 2021? Date of Poppy Day and Remembrance Sunday, and when Armistice silence takes place

Remembrance Day is marked by all nations of the Commonwealth

Remembrance Day takes place on the same date every November, with Remembrance Sunday landing a few days later.

But what do the two days signify and why do people wear poppies?

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When is Remembrance Day 2021?

Remembrance Day will take place on Thursday 11 November 2021, which is the anniversary of the signing of the Armistice that marked the end of the First World War in 1918.

On Remembrance Day - also known as Armistice Day - the Armistice silence takes place at 11am for two minutes, this marking the eleventh hour on the eleventh day of the eleventh month.

When is Remembrance Sunday 2021?

Remembrance Sunday always falls on the second weekend of November, the closest to 11 November, which means this year’s memorial takes place on Sunday 14 November.

Remembrance Sunday is a national opportunity to remember the service and sacrifice of all those that have “defended our freedoms and protected our way of life,” according to the Royal British Legion.

The Armed Forces, and their families, from Britain and the Commonwealth, the vital role played by the emergency services and those that have lost their lives as a result of conflict or terrorism are all commemorated.

How will Remembrance Day and Remembrance Sunday be commemorated?

The first official Remembrance Day celebrations on 11 November were held by King George V at Buckingham Palace in 1919, when he hosted Raymond Poincaré, the President of France.

Also known as Armistice Day, 11 November is marked by all nations of the Commonwealth, while many other countries also mark the anniversary as a day of memorial.

Traditionally, a one or two-minute silence is held at 11am, which recognises the precise time that the war ended in 1918, this being the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month.

On Remembrance Sunday, there is a national memorial ceremony that takes place at the Cenotaph on Whitehall, where the Queen traditionally pays tribute alongside members of the cabinet, opposition party leaders, former Prime Ministers, the Mayor of London and other ministers.

Wreaths of poppies are traditionally laid as an act of remembrance.

Representatives of the Armed Forces, Fishing Fleets and Merchant Air and Navy attend, as well as faith communities and High Commissioners of Commonwealth countries.

Each year, veterans also participate in the March Past. Places to take part in the Cenotaph March Past on Remembrance Sunday 2021 will be allocated through associations.

The Royal British Legion notes that although things are set to go ahead as planned for the event on Remembrance Sunday, it will continue to monitor government advice regarding Covid.

Why do people wear poppies?

People can usually be seen wearing poppies in the run up to Remembrance Day and Remembrance Sunday and on the two commemorations days.

The red poppy is a symbol of remembrance and hope for a peaceful future, and is worn as a show of support for the Armed Forces community.

The Royal British Legion website said: “The poppy is a well-known and well-established symbol, one that carries a wealth of history and meaning with it.”

The origins of the poppy lie in the opening lines of war poem ‘In Flanders Field’ by Canadian officer John McCrae, which was first published in December 1915.

The poem reads: “In Flanders fields the poppies blow, between the crosses, row on row”.

The flower was then adopted as a symbol by the newly-formed Royal British Legion and continues to be worn in remembrance today, with the Legion organising the Poppy Appeal each year.