Remembrance service programme

5 November 2020

Following the Government’s announcement on Saturday evening, regarding the new national restrictions in England which will come into effect from today (5 November)  it is with a heavy heart that the Lord Mayor of Chester and the Chairman of Cheshire West and Chester Council are having to amend some of their Remembrance Service programme for Chester.  The private ticketed service scheduled for 8 November at 3.30pm has been cancelled along with Chester Cathedral’s Communion Service at 10am. 
 
In line with the new government’s COVID restrictions, there will be no public acts of remembrance this year.  Because of social distancing regulations it is not safe this year for people to gather safely to watch the traditional services. 
 
The arrangements for this year’s Remembrance Events are not how anyone would wish them to be.  However, they are based on national guidance and specific advice from local organisations including the armed forces, the Police and the British Legion.
 
Councillor Louise Gittins, Leader of Cheshire West and Chester Council said: “Given these new restrictions it is even more important that the priority this year is about keeping people safe.   I would like to encourage everyone to come out onto their doorsteps on Sunday 8 November at 11am to mark the national two minutes silence and also place a poppy in a front window.  
 
“This year, I am asking that members of the public and our veteran community keep their pledges in remembering the fallen from the safety of their own homes.  
 
“Anyone wishing to lay a wreath at Chester Cathedral on Sunday 8 November will need to book a timeslot via the Chester Civic Team.  As the Government yesterday raised the UK threat level, it is now even more important that the Cathedral Gardens remain closed to the public so that event organisers can have oversight on who is in the gardens at any one time.  Timeslots are booking up quickly and any local organisations, military contingences or veteran associations are encouraged to contact the Chester Team promptly to book a slot.”
 
Councillor Mark Williams, Lord Mayor of Chester said: “Once again we have to amend our plans and I’m sure everyone will understand the reasons behind these amendments.  People are still being encouraged to participate but from the comfort of their own homes.
 
“Sadly, there will be no public events taking place this year at Chester Cathedral, and I therefore ask that people do not to attend unless they have officially been invited to do so.”
 
“Residents, military organisations and veterans are invited to pay their respects and observe the national two minutes silences from the safety of their homes.  It is still important that we observe the national two-minute silences, and these will take place on Sunday 8 November at 11am and Wednesday 11 November at 11am (Armistice Day).  Let’s continue to wear our poppies with pride.”
 
Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, the British Legion are still working hard with partners, volunteers, and suppliers to ensure that the nation can come together to show support for our Armed Forces Community during this year’s Poppy Appeal.  If you would like to donate to the Poppy Appeal, visit the British Legion's website.
 
Remembrance Sunday is a day for everyone to be able to commemorate the contributions of British and Commonwealth military and civilian servicemen and women in the two World Wars and later conflicts.
 
The Lord Mayor of Chester and the Chairman of Cheshire West and Chester Council has commissioned some short virtual services, and these can be found on the Council’s You Tube Accounts or via the Lord Mayor of Chester’s social media accounts.  These will be released on 7 November and can be watched at your leisure.
 
Chester Cathedral are broadcasting a service on Sunday 8 November at 10am, via their You Tube account but sadly there will be no congregation present.
 
Chester Cathedral are inviting people to write messages of remembrance or a prayer on their Prayer Wall.

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