Yesterday in Whitehall the nation stopped, reflected, remembered and honoured those who made the ultimate sacrifice.
After the Massed Bands set the mood for the National Act of Remembrance with traditional solemn music, His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales laid a wreath at the Cenotaph in Whitehall on behalf of the Queen and others were laid by members of the Royal Family, The Prime Minister, leaders of the opposition, the intelligence services, and by the heads of the Armed Services as well as The Crown Dependencies, the United Kingdom Overseas Territories and High Commissioners.
Exactly as Big Ben struck 11 O’Clock, The King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery fired their First World War era guns on Horse Guards Parade, marking the start of a two minutes’ Silence, and then fired a second to mark its end. The Buglers of the Royal Marines then sounded the “Last Post”.
When all the wreaths had been laid the Bishop of London led a service of commemoration and remembrance. After the Service, Trumpeters of the Royal Air Force sounded “Rouse” (Reveille).
The service in Whitehall marks the sacrifice of all who have laid down their lives for the Nation in war right up to the present day. 75 years ago some of the oldest veterans present at today’s National Act of Remembrance were fighting in the great battles of 1944 - a pivotal year in the Allied fight for freedom in the Second World War. The Battles of Monte Cassino, Kohima, Imphal and D-Day and Arnhem were hard won and were instrumental in the ultimate allied victory. While the nation remembers, our service continues. This year in particular we remembered Guardsman Mathew Talbot of The 1st Battalion Coldstream Guards who died as a result of injuries sustained on counter poaching operations in Malawi on 5 May 2019.