This week Norwich remembers the service and sacrifice of the armed forces, along with their families and the emergency services in conflicts past and present.
We remember too, the innocent civilian lives lost in conflicts.
Today, on Armistice Day – in commemoration of the end of World War I at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918 – the Union Flag is flying on top of City Hall and the building will be lit red, white and blue this evening.
The Lord Mayor and Sheriff will be attending a service by veterans of Norfolk and Norwich.
We also look ahead to Remembrance Sunday, where once again the Union Flag will be flown and City Hall lit in the evening. On the event organised by Norwich City Council for the day, Councillor Alan Waters, leader of the city council, said:
“This Sunday we will be holding our annual act of remembrance, a time to reflect on the bravery and sacrifice of so many to secure and preserve our freedoms.
As with last year, this Remembrance event at Norwich War Memorial in the very heart of the city – while smaller in scale and for invited guests – will be dignified and respectful.
As the planning for our Remembrance event begins in the spring, we had to take into account the Covid caseload locally at that time, as well as the potential impact the colder months could have. We have been in touch with veterans groups since then regarding our difficult decision to have a scaled-back approach to avoid risk to all concerned.
The pandemic has touched everyone’s lives deeply and we understand and share the disappointment that comes with the need to do things differently and we regret that this is being felt still now as infections remain high.
The ceremony will be recorded and broadcast to our Youtube channel to allow people to view it. Following the act of remembrance, the Lord Mayor, Sheriff, Councillors and other guests will be attending the Service of Remembrance organised by Norwich Cathedral.
For those wishing to lay a wreath at the War Memorial in their own act of remembrance after the event to pay their respects, we would urge you to take all necessary precautions to stop the spread of Covid, particularly if there are large numbers of people.
We look forward eagerly to next year, where we hope to be able to return to a full service and parade as we have in previous years.”