Museums and Heritage Sites mark Armistice Day and Remembrance Day 2011

By Jenni Davidson | 10 November 2011
a film still of a field of poppies
A still from Imperial War Museum North's Big Picture Show, specially commissioned for the Remembrance weekend.
© Imperial War Museum
The last combat veteran of the First World War died in Australia this year, but Remembrance Day still provides a focus for commemorating the huge loss to life of the Great War and those affected by more recent conflicts. All over Britain wreaths will be laid at memorials. Museums and heritage sites across the country will also be marking the occasion.

At Edinburgh Castle the drama Your Country Needs You looks at the role of The Pals Battalions in the First World War. The Pals were locally raised units made up of friends, neighbours and relatives who signed up together, served together and in many cases died together.

Their poignant story will be performed in the Great Hall on Saturday November 12 and Sunday November 13, in an event included in the ticket price for the castle.

a photo of a brown greatcoat
A greatcoat worn by a member of the Women's Land Army in WWII, held at the iMuseum.
© Manx National Heritage
Manx National Heritage
is hosting events at the iMuseum in Douglas to commemorate 90 years of the Royal British Legion. On Saturday November 12 there's a chance to get creative and raise money for the Legion with a Poppy Art Workshop. Admission is a £3 donation to the Poppy Appeal.

Also on Saturday November 12 Lest We Forget: Memorials and Their Meanings delves into the history of Remembrance Day and the different international memorials and their meanings.

On Armistice Day itself, Friday November 11, and on Remembrance Sunday there are ceremonies at 11am at the National Destroyer Memorial at Chatham Historic Dockyard in Kent.

There will be a two-minute silence on both days, followed by the firing of B Gun on the historic Second World War destroyer and national memorial HMS Cavalier.

One man in particular will be remembered at the Royal Navy Submarine Museum in Gosport, Hampshire. George Weston was a private in the Royal Sussex Regiment when he was awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal in 1915 for his bravery in rescuing wounded colleagues.

In March 1918 he was reported missing in action, but he turned up two days later with a wounded arm and went on to have a 25-year career in the Royal Navy Submarine Service and serve in the Second World War.

a photograph of a sailor in uniform
George Weston in his Royal Navy uniform.
© Royal Navy Submarine Museum
His medals have recently been bought by the Submarine Museum, who will be displaying them from Friday November 11 to Sunday November 13.

Imperial War Museum has various activities and exhibitions for the Remembrance weekend at their three sites in London, Manchester and Duxford.

On Saturday November 12, Imperial War Museum North will be launching a new 360-degree Big Picture Show, the museum's unique and emotive image and sound show, focussing on the theme of Remembrance and its relevance today.

Specially commissioned for the 2011 Remembrance weekend, the show focuses on the different elements of Remembrance, starting with its origins following the First World War through to the more recent losses in Iraq in 2005.

A series of tours and handling sessions complement the new show. Over the river at The Lowry, David Grindley's international multi-award-winning production of RC Sherriff's masterpiece Journey’s End comes direct from London's West End.

At IWM's London outpost in Lambeth, a sounding of the Last Post on November 11 and 13 is accompanied by a raft of activities ranging from poppy making drop-in workshops through to talks and lectures on everything from disarmament to the role of the 1st Sikhs in the Burma campaign of World War Two.

IWM Duxford will be commemorating Remembrance Sunday with free admission for all and thought-provoking activities throughout the day Remembrance Sunday.

The Remembrance Ceremony at the Royal Air Force Museum, Hendon takes place on November 11 and 13 and children can decorate a petal to add to the poppy collage all weekend.

More events worth looking out for:

The Battlefield was Hell: Black soldiers write and paint World War I, New Art Exchange, Nottingham, November 15

The Royal Artillery Memorial, Hyde Park Corner, London has been repaired in time for this year's Armistice Day and Remembrance Sunday.

Biggest Remembrance Day parade outside of London: Festival of Remembrance, Seaburn Centre and Sunderland city centre, November 12-13

A community drama on a parade ground filled with poppies at Redoubt Fortress and Military Museum, Eastbourne on Friday 11.

Armistice Day and Remembrance Day at the Royal Armouries at Fort Nelson
Animals in Wartime event at Museum of London Docklands

All Culture24's Remembrance events in our listings:

Remembrance on the British Legion's Website

Some media links:

Wilfred Owen: From humble cottage to dazzling tribute on bbc 

Spitfire redux: The WWII guns firing after 70 years buried in peat on bbc
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