Date issued: 30 October 2020
Like other towns and cities across the UK, Colchester would have held a civic service to mark Remembrance Sunday on 8 November.
However, following Government restrictions to tackle coronavirus, Colchester’s traditional Remembrance Sunday service and parade are unable to be held in the normal way this year.
Instead, a small socially distanced service, in-line with the national guidance for Remembrance Sunday events, led by the Mayor of Colchester, Cllr Robert Davidson, will take place at the Garrison.
Residents are being encouraged to observe their own Act of Remembrance on their doorsteps, instead of at the War Memorial, when a gun is fired at the Garrison, at 11am, to signal a national Two Minute Silence.
To support the commemorations, Colchester Borough Council has also created an online resource to help residents remember the sacrifice and service of the Armed Forces community from Britain and the Commonwealth.
The dedicated area, www.colchester.gov.uk/remembrance-sunday, features resources to support Remembrance activities at home and commemorations being held nationwide. Visitors can view special video messages by the Mayor of Colchester and Lieutenant Colonel Jim McManus AAC, Commander of Colchester Garrison.
Information will be posted on the council’s social media feeds of how people can watch the Service of Remembrance as it is broadcast live from Colchester Garrison on Facebook.
People can also donate to the Royal British Legion’s online Poppy Appeal and get an A4 poster of the iconic Remembrance Poppy that they can download, print, and display in their window.
The Mayor of Colchester, Cllr Robert Davidson, said: “I am immensely honoured to be leading our borough’s tributes to the local men and women who fought and died in both world wars and subsequent conflicts. They served, and continue to serve, the cause of freedom heroically and we owe them an enormous debt of gratitude.
“On this Remembrance Day, I would encourage residents to join me in a moment of reflection – separate but together – to honour the sacrifice and courage of former and current service men and women, including those from the Commonwealth and all our Allies.
“And I would also ask them to remember the civilian victims of war, those non-combatants whose lives were cut short or forever altered by military conflict.”
Lieutenant Colonel Jim McManus AAC, Commander of Colchester Garrison, added: “We in the military place great value in joining with the public to mark Remembrance. The military is drawn from society and we remember the Fallen as sons and daughters, husbands and wives, and brothers and sisters, as much as they were soldiers, sailors and airmen.
“This year, as we face the challenge of coronavirus, we are not able to stand side-by-side at the war memorial on Remembrance Sunday as we have done in years past. But in the shared silences that we observe, we can pay our respects together, even if we are apart.”
Find out more about how to observe your own Act of Remembrance by visiting the council’s dedicated webpage.