Scotland falls silent to honour Armistice Day

SCOTLAND fell silent as commemorations were held across the country to mark Armistice Day.
Spitfire LA198 is lowered to the ground for Amistice Day at Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum. Picture: John DevlinSpitfire LA198 is lowered to the ground for Amistice Day at Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum. Picture: John Devlin
Spitfire LA198 is lowered to the ground for Amistice Day at Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum. Picture: John Devlin

At Holyrood, all parliamentary business was suspended as First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, party leaders, MSPs, staff and visiting veterans joined presiding officer Tricia Marwick for an event in the garden lobby.

Veterans and the public also gathered at Edinburgh’s Scott Monument for a reading of Laurence Binyon’s lines – “They shall grow not old as we that are left grow old ...” – followed by a two-minute silence at the Garden of Remembrance.

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Large crowds congregated in Glasgow’s George Square to honour the fallen, while workers at the city’s Kelvingrove Museum and Art Gallery downed tools at 11am.

In Aberdeen, Lord Provost George Adam joined council staff and members of the public to observe the national silence at the authority’s Marischal College headquarters, which have been lit in red.

At Erskine care home in Bishopton, Renfrewshire, veterans, staff and visitors gathered at the home’s Memorial Stone to pay tribute to comrades in the armed forces and remember those who died in service.

Erskine first opened in 1916 as a military hospital. It has since expanded to meet the changing needs of war veterans and now cares for all disabled ex-service people if their injuries were sustained during war.

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Lt Col Steve Conway, the care home’s chief executive, said: “Armistice Day and Remembrance Sunday are two very significant dates for our veterans, as we remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice in conflicts from the First World War to the present day.

“Some of our residents saw active service in the Second World War and others, as well as some staff members, served in subsequent conflicts which may have been more limited geographically but which still had a devastating effect on individuals and families.

“At this time of year we remember all those who gave their lives so others might live in peace, and we are proud to care for those that did return.”

The Holyrood event was attended by veterans from Whitefoord House, which is located near the parliament building.

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The facility provides supported living for former service personnel who are homeless or in need through the Veterans Housing Association.

Ms Marwick read a poem before Stuart McMillan MSP, the parliament piper, played “All the Blue Bonnets Over the Border” to commemorate 100 years since the Battle of Loos.

Armistice Day was also marked with the unveiling of a new digital roll of honour marking Dundee’s contribution in the First World War. More than 4,000 names of those who died have been recorded.

Workers lowering a Spitfire from a suspended museum display at Kelvingrove paused to observe the silence. The Spitfire flew with 602 (City of Glasgow) Squadron between 1947 and 1949.

Armistice Day is commemorated annually to mark the truce signed between the allies and Germany in France, ending hostilities on the Western Front. It took effect at 11am - the “11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month” of 1918.