Centenary marked on Remembrance Day

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Remembrance Sunday Parade 2018 in Liverpool. Pic © Megan Tattersley JMU Journalism

Silence fell across Liverpool, the region and the rest of the country today on the 100th anniversary of the end of World War One, in Remembrance of those who lost their lives in past and present conflicts.

St George’s Hall, as it has in previous years, welcomed thousands of people to the city centre to honour those who had fought for their country.

The event began around 10:30am with a parade of present and ex-servicemen and women walking to the plateau, with local regiments standing proud, shoulder to shoulder.

Lord Mayor, Cllr Christine Banks, led the service while The Band of the Duke of Lancaster Regiment and classical singer, Danielle Louise Thomas, brought music to those massed in Lime Street.

As the first poem, ‘In Flanders Fields’ was read by BBC Merseyside’s Roger Philips, the rain subsided and sunshine broke out from behind the clouds.

The Archbishop of Liverpool, Malcolm McMahon, gave his ‘Thought for Remembrance Day’. His focus was discussing how we still have not learnt from the suffering of World War One.

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Ending his speech, he told the spectators he hopes “this earth, our common home will be a place of peace”.

This emotional occasion brought Frances Young all the way to Liverpool from Cornwall. She told JMU Journalism: “I chose to come here, for such as special event because my father fought in the First World War at the King’s Regiment in Liverpool.

“I found the experience very moving. There were so many people yet it was so quiet.”

Wreaths laid on Remembrance Sunday 2018 in Liverpool. Pic © Megan Tattersley JMU Journalism

Just before the two minutes’ silence, actor Sue Johnston OBE read celebrated Birkenhead soldier and poet, Wilfred Owen’s ‘Anthem for Doomed Youth’.

When the clock struck 11am, poppy petals blew from the rooftop of the hall and, for the first time, fell from the Radio City Tower at St John’s Beacon to honour all those who died in battle.

Following this, former Royal Marine, Andy Grant, spoke of his experience of war. Although a touching story, he managed to bring humour to the crowd.

He laughed, saying that when the doctor removed his leg, they removed part of his tattoo, which changed ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’ into ‘You’ll Never Walk’.

Like Mr Grant, spectator John Colicutt also fought in Afghanistan. Proudly displaying his medals, he told JMU Journalism: “Liverpool’s service was first class. This service is important for everyone, not just those who have been directly in a war zone.”

Finally, the regiments departed and wreaths were respectfully laid at the Cenotaph, with many lingering there afterwards to witness the tributes.

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