To mark the centenary of the end of the First World War, the Chelmsford community is working together to coordinate a diverse, city wide programme of events and activities.
The aim is to give everyone in Chelmsford the chance to discover more about the great war, uncover its stories and contemplate the concepts of conflict and peace.
The full centenary programme includes over 15 different events and activities across the city and surrounding parishes.
Commemorations will take many forms, including the free ‘Chelmsford Remembers Them’ Concert on the 7th November, featuring a Violin belonging to a WWI Soldier and the City of London Sinfonia performing alongside 100 school children, the Ideas Festival including a Poetry Competition and a Light Parade, and of course, the Remembrance Sunday Parade itself on Sunday 11 November, which has been organised by the Mayor's Office and the City Council’s events team.
At 6am on Sunday 11 November, the Cathedral will participate in the national ‘Battle’s Over’ tribute featuring a bagpiper playing from the top of the Cathedral tower. The city’s Remembrance Service, starts at 10.55am at the Chelmsford War Memorial and will be followed by an extended parade, led by the Essex Yeomanry Band, ending at Shire Hall. This year for the first time, the service will be live streamed on a large screen outside the Shire Hall.
In the afternoon the Cathedral bells will ring out in unison with churches and cathedrals in villages, towns and cities across the country.
The Mayor of Chelmsford, Councillor Yvonne Spence said "The legacy of the First World War is not just historic. It has impacted and continues to impact the lives of so many families. In Chelmsford we have a proud tradition of honouring all those who have given sacrifice – whether through death or injury, across all conflicts.
“But this year, we need to especially recognise the centenary of the First World War armistice. It is appropriate that we will not just mark the event at the City Hall and War Memorial, but that we will march down into the High Street before concluding at the Shire Hall. I really hope we see bumper crowds joining in at this unique event.”
This year on Remembrance Sunday, Fairfield Road car park and Townfield Street Multi-storey car park will be free of charge for the day. High Chelmer car park will be free until 1pm and all multi-storey car parks in the city centre will be open from 6am.
Four poignant tributes have also been installed in the city’s green spaces; a foliage sculpture of a solider next to the memorial in Bell Meadow and three new benches around the solider are embellished with poppies, doves and the message ‘Lest We Forget’.
The Odeon Roundabout in the city centre is displaying a large poignant red poppy picked out in begonias, while the pleasure gardens at the Hylands Estate will feature the lettering ‘1914-1918’ and ‘WWI Centenary’ alongside the shapes of red poppies.
For a full up-to-date line up of events including exhibitions, poetry, musical performances and film screenings, visit the Visit Chelmsford website: www.visitchelmsford.co.uk/armistice2018
If you have planned your own commemorative event and would like it listed on the Visit Chelmsford website, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Ideas Festival website: http://www.ideasfestivalchelmsford.org
Chelmsford Remembers Them Concert web page link (registration is essential): https://www.chelmsford.gov.uk/theatres/whats-on/community-events/ww1-centenary-concert-chelmsford-remembers-them/
Friday 26 October 2018