By Michael Sercan Daventry
LONDON (AA): Thousands of people across Britain observed two minutes of silence on Friday to mark the 98th anniversary of Armistice Day, when fighting stopped in the First World War in 1918.
People across the country marked the moment at 1100 GMT – the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month in 1918 – when hostilities in the four-year conflict ceased.
Television coverage on many channels cut to footage of the Big Ben clock tower chiming for 11 a.m., followed by brief scenes of services held in other cities including Belfast and Edinburgh.
Prince Harry led commemorations at the National Memorial Arboretum, the U.K.’s national site of remembrance, by laying a wreath.
An official ceremony attended by Queen Elizabeth will be held on Sunday.
Hundreds of people attended an event in London’s Trafalgar Square, organized by the Royal British Legion (RBL) military charity, where commemorative poppies were laid in the fountains.
In Croydon, south London, people held an extra minute’s silence in memory of six men and one woman killed in a tram crash earlier this week.
RBL head of remembrance, Nigel McCulloch, called on people to remember British soldiers who died in conflicts after the First World War as well.
“When you pause to remember this Armistice Day during the Two Minute Silence we ask that you recognize the sacrifices of all generations of the British Armed Forces who have served to defend the freedom we enjoy today,” he said in a statement.
[Photo: The Cenotaph on Whitehall, London, in November 2004 (with wreaths laid down on Remembrance Day). Photographer: Chris Nyborg.Cnyborg. GNU Free Documentation License]