WW1 Related Events in the United Kingdom

Royal Artillery memorial in London.

This page provides information about events related to the First World War taking place in the United Kingdom. Index to the listings:

Remembrance Ceremony — Act of Remembrance

Daily Act of Remembrance: Last Post & Reveille, National Memorial Arboretum

Inside the Millenium Chapel of Peace and Forgiveness, National Memorial Arboretum, Staffordshire.

Date: Daily (except Christmas Day) at 11.00 hours

Venue: Millennium Chapel, National Memorial Arboretum, Croxall Road, Alrewas, Staffordshire DE13 7AR

Admission: Free

(There is a parking charge at the National Memorial Arboretum for cars maximum £4.00 per day - all parking fees go directly to the NMA charity.)

The Millennium Chapel of Peace and Forgiveness is the only place where a daily Act of Remembrance takes place in England. The National Memorial Arboretum is located in the centre of England at Alrewas, near Lichfield, Staffordshire and is the place “Where our Nation Remembers”.

For further details see the National Memorial Arboretum website at:

Website: www.thenma.org Chapel

Website: www.thenma.org

Annual National Act of Remembrance: Remembrance Sunday

The Cenotaph, Whitehall, London

Date: Sunday 8 November 2020 at 11.00 hours

Venue: The Cenotaph, Whitehall, City of Westminster, London SW1

Admission: Free public event with restricted access to the public.

On Sunday 8 November an official annual Service of Remembrance will take place at the Cenotaph in central London.

Following the formal ceremony and wreath-laying The Royal British Legion co-ordinates a march past the Cenotaph, which includes members of ex-Service organizations and civilian organizations which have played their part on the Home Front in wartime.

Services of Remembrance also take place at 11.00 hours on Remembrance Sunday around the United Kingdom. For information visit the appropriate website of the local authority.

Annual Commemoration of the Arrival of the Unknown Warrior

Memorial plaque to the Unknown Warrior, 10 November 1920.

Date: 10 November 2020 at 20.00 hrs

Venue: Main Concourse Platform 8, Victoria Railway Station, London SW1V 1JU

Admission: Free & open to all.

An annual ceremony of commemoration at Victoria Station by the London Branch of the Western Front Association, to remember the arrival of the Unknown Warrior on 10 November 1920.

  • 20.15 Parade Assembly
  • 20.20 Narration
  • 20.30 Last Post and one minute's silence
  • The Exhortation: They shall grow not old as we that are left grow old, Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemnA. At the going down of the sun, and in the morning We will remember them.
  • Reveille
  • 20.32 Presentation of Wreaths
  • Disperse
The Western Front Association logo

View a film (3m:23s) of the ceremony on 10 November 2014:

Website: www.youtube.com 10 November 2014 Ceremony

For enquiries or any more information you can visit the London WFA Branch at:

Website: www.westernfrontassociation.com London Branch

Facebook: https://facebook.com/wfalondon/

Website: londonwfabranch@gmail.com

Annual Act of Remembrance, The Western Front Association

The Cenotaph, Whitehall, London

Date: 11 November 2020 at 11.00 hours

Venue: The Cenotaph, Whitehall, City of Westminster, London SW1

Admission: Free public event.The Western Front Association logo

Organiser: The Western Front Association (WFA)

Since the early 1990s the Western Front Association (WFA) has held an annual Ceremony of Remembrance at the Cenotaph memorial on Whitehall at 11.00 hours on 11 November.

Members of the public are welcome to attend the ceremony.

Below are links to short films of the Western Front Association Armistice Day ceremonies held at the Cenotaph in recent years.

Reflections: Film of the Western Front Association Annual 11 November Ceremonies 2014 - 2017

  • View a short film (4m:41s) of the 11 November 2017 ceremony with a reading by Cerys Matthews (filmed by Coburn Communications):

Website: youtube.com 11 November 2017

  • View a short film (2m:41s) of the 11 November 2016 ceremony, with the poem In Memoriam by Lt Ewart Alan Mackintosh read by Cerys Matthews (filmed by Coburn Communications):

Website: youtube.com 11 November 2016

  • View a short film (2m:30s) of the 11 November 2015 ceremony, with the poem My Boy Jack by Rudyard Kipling, read by Cerys Matthews (filmed by Coburn Communications):

Website: youtube.com 11 November 2015

  • View a short film (2m:30s) of the 11 November 2014 ceremony (filmed by Coburn Communications):

Website: youtube.com 11 November 2014

To see information for WFA events visit The Western Front Association website:

Website: www.westernfrontassociation.com

WFA logo by kind permission of the WFA

Annual Armistice Day Service of Remembrance, National Memorial Arboretum

Armed Forces Memorial, National Memorial Arboretum

Date: 11 November 2020; 10.40 - 11.30 hours

Venue: National Memorial Arboretum, Croxall Road, Alrewas, Staffordshire DE13 7AR

Admission: Free

The National Memorial Arboretum is located in the centre of England at Alrewas, near Lichfield, Staffordshire and is the place “Where our Nation Remembers”.

There is a parking charge at the National Memorial Arboretum for cars maximum £4.00 per day - all parking fees go directly to the NMA charity. Extra parking will be available. Visitors are advised to arrive early. The site will be open from 0800 hours.

For enquiries about Armistice Day arrangements see the National Memorial Arboretum web page at:

Website: www.thenma.org Armistice Day

Website: www.thenma.org

Exhibition

First World War in the Air

1WW exhibition

Date: to 31 December 2020

Venue: Royal Air Force Museum, Grahame Park Way Colindale, London, Greater London, England, NW9 5LL

Admission: Free

A major exhibition telling the story of the development of the war in the air in 1914 to 1918. Exhibits ranging from personal letters to historic aeroplanes relate the story of the Royal Flying Corps and the founding Royal Air Force in April 1918, incorporating stories of the men and women who worked on the ground and the courageous aircrew who flew the aircraft in those early days of aviation.

Website: www.rafmuseum.org First World War in the Air Exhibition

Photo courtesy of RAF Museum

Theatre

War Horse

National Theatre

On tour: UK and International

Scene from War Horse the play Scene from War Horse the play

Due to the global situation with Covid-19 there are no productions of War Horse being performed. Check with the War Horse website to keep up to date with any changes.

Based on a story by Michael Morpurgo, the First World War is the backdrop for this tale of bravery, loyalty, and the extraordinary bond between a young recruit and his horse. Actors, working with astonishing life-sized puppets by the internationally renowned Handspring Puppet Company, take audiences on an unforgettable journey through history.

At the outbreak of World War One, Joey, young Albert's beloved horse, is sold to the cavalry and shipped to France.

He's soon caught up in enemy fire, and fate takes him on an extraordinary odyssey, serving on both sides before finding himself alone in no man's land.

But Albert cannot forget Joey and, still not old enough to enlist, he embarks on a treacherous mission to the trenches to find him and bring him home.

The book on which the play is based came about after Michael Morpurgo had a chance conversation in his local pub nearly 30 years ago with an old soldier who had been to the First World War as a 17 year old ‘with ‘orses’ as he said. He discovered that over a million horses died in that dreadful war – and that was just on the British side – and that most of them that survived were sold off after the war was over, to butchers in France.

For information about the show and War Horse On Tour venues go to the website at:

Website www.warhorseonstage.com

Photographer: Simon Annand

Lecture Programmes on WW1 Military History

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic please note that lectures may be cancelled or postponed. Visit the website of the relevant organization to check on updates.

The National Archives, Kew, Surrey

Free and paid lectures, events and tours to see behind the scenes at the archives and find out more on how to research family history using the archive collections. For more information, a calendar of events and how to access a large number of online lectures and webinars go to the National Archives' website at:

Website: www.nationalarchives.gov.uk Events

The National Army Museum, London

The museum offers a programme of lectures, conferences and study days. Led by experts, the programme aims to increase an understanding of history, the arts, science, and the world we live in today - through the exploration of military history.

Owing to Covid-19 safety measures, the National Army Museum is offering live-streamed lectures. To register for viewing visit the National Army Museum's website at:

Website: www.nam.ac.uk What's On

Website: www.nam.ac.uk

The Tank Museum, Bovington, Dorset

The Tank Museum provides lectures as part of its events programme. For further information go to The Tank Museum Diary of Events at:

Website: www.tankmuseum.org Events

University of Birmingham Centre for First World War Studies

The Centre for First World War Studies is part of the Centre of War Studies at Birmingham University. The Centre holds events including seminars, lectures and conferences. For information on the lecture programme visit the website at:

Website: www.warstudies.bham.ac.uk

University College London

Lectures held during June 2014 by the University College London can be watched online on YouTube.

University of Wolverhampton: First World War Research Group

The group organises study days, lectures, master classes and conferences. Directors of the Research Group are Professor Stephen Badsey and Professor Gary Sheffield.

For information about the First World War Research Group visit the website:

Website: www.wlv.ac.uk First World War Research Group

The Western Front Association (WFA)

The Western Front Association logo

Lectures, seminars and conferences are held at regular monthly Branch meetings and at a national level around the United Kingdom and internationally. Speakers include well-known military historians and WFA members with expertise in a wide variety of topics related to the First World War.

Some of the planned conferences, seminars and lectures have been postponed or cancelled due to the Covid-19 pandemic, however a number of lectures are already, or will be, available to watch live and online.

For further information about the calendar of lectures and events visit the WFA website at:

Website: www.westernfrontassociation.com Events

England Regional WW1 Centenary Commemoration

The following websites, set up during the 1914-1918 Centenary, are still available to view.

Berkshire: Berkshire at War

A blog produced by the Berkshire Record Office.

Website: berkshirevoiceswwi.wordpress.com About Berkshire at War

Kent & Medway in the First World War

Website: www.kent.gov.uk

Kent: University of Kent Gateways to the First World War Project

Website: www.gatewaysfww.org.uk

Shropshire Remembers

Website: www.shropshireremembers.org.uk

Staffordshire: The Black Country Living Museum

Website: bclm.co.uk World War One

Surrey in the Great War: A County Remembers

Website: www.exploringsurreyspast.org.uk

Wiltshire

Website: www.wiltshireatwar.org.uk

Scotland WW1 Centenary Event Commemoration

The following website, set up during the 1914-1918 Centenary, is still available to view.

Scotland and the First World War

Website: www.visitscotland.com Scotland and the First World War

Wales WW1 Centenary Event Commemoration

The following website, set up during the 1914-1918 Centenary, is still available to view.

Cymru’n Cofio — Wales Remembers 1914-1918

Website: www.walesremembers.org

Related Reading

Cover of War Horse book by Michael Morpurgo (film tie-in publication)

War Horse

by Michael Morpurgo

This book is about Joey, a farm horse requisitioned by the British Army for service in the First World War on the Western Front. The reader experiences the horrors of war and the compassion of the animals and humans in the story through the eyes of the horse. Written about 25 years ago as a result of Michael Morpurgo's conversations with First World War veterans, the story has taken on a new life as a highly acclaimed play and has been adapted into a major film by Steven Spielberg. Published by Egmont Books Ltd; Film tie-in ed edition (7 Nov 2011), ISBN-10: 1405259418 and ISBN-13: 978-1405259415

Cover of The War Horses book by Simon Butler

The War Horses: The Tragic Fate of a Million Horses Sacrificed in the First World War

by Simon Butler

The War Horses focuses on the horses, mules and donkeys that were requisitioned by the British Army to carry rations, pull guns and wagons full of munitions. The book is has received excellent reviews. It is illustrated with more than 200 photographs, includes eye witness accounts and reveals the great bond between the men and the animals they cared for in such difficult circumstances. Published by Halsgrove, 2nd edition (27 Sep 2011), ISBN-10: 0857040847 and ISBN-13: 978-0857040848

Cover of Warrior: The Real War Horse by General Jack Seely

Warrior: The Amazing Story of a Real War Horse

by General Jack Seely

Warrior was a thoroughbred horse which went to France with Jack Seely in 1914. With Jack the horse survived on The Western Front for five years, both of them cheating death from bombs and bullets, and leading a cavalry charge by the Canadians in 1918. This republished edition is introduced by General Jack Seely's grandson, the well-known racing broadcaster and journalist Brough Scott. Published by Racing Post Books (10 Oct 2011). ISBN-10: 1908216107 and ISBN-13: 978-1908216106.

Related Topics

Events on The Western Front

Buglers of the Last Post Association play “Last Post” at a daily ceremony at the Menin Gate Memorial to the Missing in Ypres, Belgium.
Buglers of the Last Post Association.

Events relating to the First World War on the Western Front battlefields:

Ypres Salient Events

Artois & French Flanders Events

Somme Events

Aisne Events

Virtual WW1 Online Exhibitions

There are a number of virtual WW1 exhibitions available to view online. For links to these you can visit our page at:

Virtual WW1 Exhibitions for Research Online