Southampton City Council announces plan to mark Remembrance

Southampton City Council has announced the initiatives taking place in the city to mark Remembrance that allows residents to honour the sacrifices that our armed forces and civilians have made in a way that ensures we all adhere to important social distancing guidelines.


The Council will be encouraging residents to mark Remembrance Sunday on 8 November 2020 and Armistice Day on Wednesday 11 November 2020 in a way that follows current government guidelines. There will be an online Remembrance ceremony, a map of the war memorials in Southampton and residents are encouraged to decorate their windows with homemade poppies to pay their respects.

This year is poignant because we marked the 75th anniversary of VE Day in May, VJ Day in August and it is also the 100th anniversary of the unveiling of The Cenotaph war memorial in Watts Park.

Southampton Online Remembrance Ceremony

A short, closed Remembrance ceremony will take place with key members of the armed forces community in attendance. The service will be filmed at different war memorials across the city and shared on Council social media channels on Sunday 8 November 2020 at 11:02am.

History of the Cenotaph 

2020 marks 100 years since the unveiling of the Sir Edward Lutyens designed Cenotaph on 6 November 2020. The memorial was the first of dozens by Lutyens to be built in permanent form and it influenced his later designs, including The Cenotaph on Whitehall in London.

Councillor Sue Blatchford, Mayor of Southampton, will be telling the story of The Cenotaph which will also be shared on Council social media channels on the anniversary.

Remembrance Bench

A new Remembrance bench will be unveiled at Veracity Sports Ground between Itchen and Merryoak. This will join our suite of four benches that have been placed around the city to commemorate the contribution that armed forces personnel made to World War One. The other benches can be found at Southampton Old Cemetery, South Stoneham Garden of Remembrance at Stoneham Cemetery, Hollybrook Cemetery and Lances Hill.

Find your local War memorial

Residents are encouraged to visit the war memorials in Southampton, which includes the plaque at Town Quay Park, a tree at Mayflower Park to commemorate The Falklands, the Burma Memorial at Grosvenor Square, The Cenotaph in Watts Park and a memorial at Hollybrook Cemetery. You can download a map of the memorials on the VisitSouthampton website.

Share your photos with us paying your respects at the memorials on social media using the hashtags #NeverForgotten and #SouthamptonRemembers.

City Poppy Decoration

Lamp posts around The Cenotaph will be decorated with poppies and we are encouraging local households and businesses to make their own remembrance poppies to display in windows.

Keep your eyes peeled on our social media channels as the Cultural Services’ Museum Learning team will be showing you how to create your very own remembrance poppy. You can also download and print an iconic remembrance poppy from The Royal British Legion website.

Hang your poppy in your window to show your support for the armed forces community from Sunday 8 November and make sure you share your pictures with us and on social media using the hashtags #NeverForgotten and #SouthamptonRemembers, so we can share them with our social media followers.

Doorstep Silence

We are encouraging all residents to stand on their doorstep at 11am and honour the 2-minute silence.

Guildhall Illuminations 

The Southampton 02 Guildhall will be illuminated red on Sunday 8 and Wednesday 11 November 2020.

Councillor Satvir Kaur, Cabinet Member for Homes and Culture, said: “Southampton played an invaluable role in our war efforts and it is crucial that we continue to come together to remember those that sacrificed so much for our freedoms today. This year is particularly poignant for Southampton as we marked 75 years since VE Day in May and VJ Day in August which Southampton as an international port played a huge part in, as well as 100 years since The Cenotaph war memorial was unveiled in 1920. While we cannot all physically be together this year to remember and mark this important annual event, I hope everyone gets involved with poppy displays and joins us on their doorstep for our minute silence on Armistice Day.”

Archie Parsons, from Southampton Royal British Legion, said: “The past continues to have a great impact on the people of Southampton and, on Remembrance Sunday and Armistice Day, we reflect and give thanks to all those that played their part in bringing peace and those who helped to re-build our great city to what it is today. We shall be forever thankful to them.” 

Southampton City Council has this year been announced amongst the most supportive organisations for Britain’s Armed Forces, by receiving The Employer Recognition Scheme Gold Award, the highest award achievable for an organisation.

More information can be found here –