Remembrance Day

By Natalie Bird   |   11th November 2016

This day has always been an important day in my family for many years.

My Grandad brought us up to be respectful and mindful of our veterans. He bought us poppies to wear when we were in school, and still to this day, even with me now being 25, always checks that I have one.

Every year my Grandad and my Dad go to Manchester for the parade. My Grandad dresses in his Sunday best, which isn’t out of the ordinary as he was brought up in an era that you were to be in your best clothes on a Sunday.

He wears his poppy on his overcoat, as does my Dad, they have their heads held high and proudly watch the amazing event that takes place in honour of the outstanding courage of our soldiers, some who have died and others who have suffered.

This year Remembrance Sunday marks the pinnacle of the Royal British Legion’s Poppy Appeal. It was launched this year just months after the nation marked 100 years since the start of the Battle of the Somme during the First World War.

This year we are being encouraged to not only remember past wars but the present day ones, and remember that our soldiers are still making us as a nation incredibly proud and that the Royal British Legion is as necessary today as it always was.

How many of us know where the symbol of the ‘poppy’ came from? Well here’s the story behind it…

In the spring of 1915, shortly after losing a friend in Ypres, a Canadian doctor, Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae was inspired by the sight of poppies growing in battle-scarred fields to write a now famous poem called ‘In Flanders Fields’. After the First World War, the poppy was adopted as a symbol of Remembrance.

It really is important to remember this day, all the sweat, blood and tears our soldiers, their families and us as a nation have endured. I don’t think just one day is enough to truly show how immensely proud we are of them.

Natalie Bird