It's all about the First World War this year and quite right too - we should never forget and never go back to something so awful.
The Royal British Legion has brought together celebrities and veterans to ask the British public to take part in LIGHTS OUT, a national initiative to commemorate the centenary of the First World War. Famous faces including Jeremy Paxman, Twiggy, David Gandy and Louis Smith feature alongside Chelsea Pensioners and Service personnel in a video to promote the initiative which will complement a candlelight vigil taking place on the evening of Monday 4th August at Westminster Abbey.
Communities across the UK are being invited to take part in this national moment by switching off their lights between 2200 and 2300hrs on 4th August, the date Britain entered the war 100 years ago, and illuminating their homes with a single candle or light. Members of The Royal British Legion have already planned 130 events nationwide for the public to participate in, with more to be announced.
LIGHTS OUT takes inspiration from the famous words of wartime Foreign Secretary Sir Edward Grey, who remarked on August 3rd 1914: “the lamps are going out all over Europe; we shall not see them lit again in our life-time”.
Charles Byrne, Director of Fundraising at The Royal British Legion, said:
“Sir Edward Grey’s stirring words are the campaign’s foundation. Our vision is that over one million candles will be lit across the UK, commemorating every Service man and woman who died during WW1. We hope to see candles lit at every war memorial, community centre and home in every village and in every community.
“This is one of a number of initiatives the Legion has undertaken to commemorate the anniversary of the First World War, when we hope to pass the torch of remembrance onto a younger generation ensuring there will always be a living legacy to those who sacrificed their today for our tomorrows.”
To support LIGHTS OUT and as part of a special partnership with Marks & Spencer, limited edition Centenary candles will be available to purchase from Friday 4th July in stores and online. Profits will be donated to the Legion to support the charity’s vital work with the current and ex-members of the Armed Forces, and their families.
I will be turning the LIGHTS OUT for sure - will you?