4 August 2014 - 10:41
Royal Family begin WW1 commemorations


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The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge formally arrived in Belgium this morning to be greeted by King Philippe and Queen Mathilde at L’Abbaye Saint-Laurent to begin a series of events to commemorate the outbreak of WW1 in Belgium throughout the day, to be joined by Prince Harry later today.

Arriving in the country yesterday with staff from RAF Northolt, the Cambridges first attended a ceremony at the Cointe Inter-allied Memorial in Liège. They will be joined by Prince Harry in early evening to attend a reception at Mons Town Hall before attending a Commemoration Event at Saint Symphorien Military Cemetery shortly before 8pm this evening, the main event of the visit.

Prince Charles attends the Commonwealth service at Glasgow Cathedral.

Prince Charles attends the Commonwealth service at Glasgow Cathedral.

Members of the Royal Family are attending a range of different services around the country today to mark the outbreak of the Great War on behalf of The Queen, reaching all corners of the country.

Prince Charles, as Duke of Rothesay, attended the Commonwealth’s commemoration at Glasgow Cathedral this morning. Following the service, the Duke will go directly to the Glasgow City Chambers and join a reception for members of the Glasgow community including the family of a First World War Victoria Cross holder and veterans as well as Commonwealth students and school children.

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Following this, Commonwealth leaders and other dignitaries will attend a wreath-laying ceremony in George Square – Prince Charles will lay a wreath at the Cenotaph.

Other commemorative events will include:

  • The Queen will attend a commemorative service for the outbreak of the War at Crathie Kirk in Balmoral this evening.
  • Prince Philip will attend a similar service at Sandringham Parish Church.
  • The Duchess of Cornwall will attend the national service on behalf of The Queen at Westminster Abbey.
  • Prince Harry will attend a commemorative event in Folkestone (the ‘Step Short’ service) later this morning where he’ll unveil a memorial arch, lay a wreath and take the salute from a military parade and a civilian one. He’ll also meet parade participants before heading off to join the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in Belgium.
  • The Duke of York will attend a service at St Anne’s Cathedral in Belfast, Northern Ireland.
  • The Earl and Countess of Wessex will attend a service at Guildford Cathedral tonight.
  • On the Isle of Wight, Princess Anne will join a Vigil Service at the Chapel of St Nicholas in Castro tonight.
  • The Duke of Kent will open the photographic street gallery “Fields of Battle – Lands of Peace 14-18″, in St James’s Park, this afternoon.
  • The Duke and Duchess of Gloucester will attend the service n Wales tonight at Llandaff Cathedral.

The national service at Westminster Abbey, attended by the Duchess of Cornwall, will see the Abbey descend into darkness towards eleven o’clock – the time when war was declared – where at that time the Duchess will extinguish a flame at the Grave of the Unknown Warrior at exactly 11 to mark the declaration.

Royal Central will be covering the commemorations on Twitter and on site throughout the day and tonight. Our Deputy Editor will be at Westminster Abbey this evening for the Duchess of Cornwall’s arrival.

Photo: BBC Live



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Edited by Martin




  • Emily Elizabeth Windsor-Cragg

    Possibly you are not aware that the Royal Family sent two of its own into the Great War. Edward VIII spent three years on the ground in Western Italy and Morocco, and George VI was involved also but I don’t know as much about his service. When Edward went he was 20 years old, about 5’4″, maybe 100 pounds, a skinny little thing. And when he returned he had grown to 5’7″ and become a man in the Service of his country. But a lot of his contemporaries never made it back. That whole generation of young people lost its leaders, just as the US Baby Boom generation lost its leaders in the US Vietnam War during the 1960s and afterward.


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