His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh opened the 84th Royal British Legion’s Field of Remembrance at Westminster Abbey on Thursday 8th November 2012.
His Royal Highness arrived at the Field of Remembrance, on the Abbey’s North Green, shortly before 11 am and was greeted by the Dean of Westminster, the Very Reverend Dr John Hall and the Rector of St Margaret’s Church, Canon Andrew Tremlett.
Prayers were said by the Dean and the Rector. The Dean said: ‘For the 84th time at the Field of Remembrance we meet again to remember those who gave their lives in the conflicts of our time that we might enjoy freedom and peace.’
The Duke of Edinburgh laid a cross of remembrance in front of two wooden crosses from the Graves of Unknown British Soldiers from the First and Second World Wars. The Last Post was sounded from the parapet of St Margaret’s Church by Trumpeters of the Household Cavalry and the Exhortation of Remembrance was said by Mrs Sarah Jones, President of the Royal British Legion Poppy Factory, before an observance of two minutes’ silence at 11am.
After the silence His Royal Highness toured the plots of poppy crosses meeting veterans, representatives of organisations involved in conflict, and members of the public, who have planted a cross in memory of their fallen comrades and loved ones.
Each November the Royal British Legion establishes a Field of Remembrance in the grounds of Westminster Abbey. The field is a sea of remembrance crosses with scarlet poppies - a symbol of remembrance and a tribute to the memory of ex-Service men and women.