On 14 November 2021, The Lord Mayor of Oxford, in partnership with the Oxford City branch of the Royal British Legion, hosted this year’s Oxford’s Remembrance Sunday Service at the Memorial in St Giles’.
The event was especially significant as it marked the centenary of the Royal British Legion. And after the parade was cancelled in 2020 due to the pandemic, it meant a lot for everyone to be able to pay their respects in person.
The Lord Mayor of Oxford, Councillor Mark Lygo, was joined by military units, uniformed organisations, community groups, civic dignitaries, residents and visitors from across the county to mark Remembrance Sunday.
Representatives from the University of Oxford, Oxford Brookes University, Oxfordshire County Council, Thames Valley Police, Oxfordshire Fire and Rescue, and Help for Heroes were also in attendance.
Hundreds of people gathered in St Giles’ to watch the military groups and civic organisations take part in a processional march to the War Memorial. Words were spoken by representatives of different faiths, including the Oxford Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, Quaker and Humanist communities.
The first Armistice Day service took place on 11 November 1919 on the grounds of Buckingham Palace. The poppy was the first flower to be seen in the mud of the Western Front – amidst the devastation and desolation of the landscape.
The Royal British Legion adopted it in 1920 as a symbol of remembrance, sacrifice and hope. The Royal British Legion has been supporting service men and women, ex-serving personnel and their families since 1921.