Online Act of Remembrance this Sunday
The people of South Tyneside are encouraged to join communities across the country to pay their respects to the Armed Forces with tributes at home and online this year.
Due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and the Government-imposed restrictions, the Annual Remembrance Service and Parades that are traditionally held in the Borough, are not taking place.
Commemorations have been moved online instead, with residents and veterans urged to pay their respects at home, by observing the national two-minutes silence and following special local tributes to be streamed on the Council's social media channels, at 11am, this Sunday (8 November) and on Armistice Day - Wednesday 11 November.
This is in addition to the national service, which will be broadcast on TV and radio, at 11am, this Sunday.
The Council is also working with the Royal British Legion, uniformed services and other local organisations, to support their online commemorations.
The Mayor of South Tyneside, Councillor Norman Dick - a veteran himself - said: "We are extremely proud of our Armed Forces past and present and always place our veterans and military personnel at the heart of our commemorations.
"Sadly, it is simply not possible to deliver our traditional remembrance events in line with Government restrictions. We understand many people will be disappointed, but the safety of our residents, visitors, military personnel, veterans and their families, are our main priority right now. They must be protected, particularly at this crucial stage in the pandemic.
"Although, we are not holding any physical public events, we will still mark this very special occasion and are urging people to get involved safely by observing a two minutes' silence on their doorstep, in their garden or in the home.
"For those who have internet access, the Council will screen virtual tributes online. The national service will also be broadcast on TV and radio.
"We can all take the opportunity to tune in to TV or radio, or connect online, to remember and reflect on the sacrifices made by such brave service men and women, while showing support for our Armed Forces community."
The Council, working alongside the Royal British Legion, local uniformed services and other organisations, have pre-recorded a virtual service, featuring a two-minutes silence and footage of wreaths being laid at Borough war memorials. This will be streamed on the Council's Facebook and Twitter social media pages, at 11am on Remembrance Sunday.
Another short film, featuring messages of remembrance, will be screened at 11am on Armistice Day (Wednesday 8 November).
Members of the public are encouraged to join in the two-minutes silences at 11am on Remembrance Sunday and Armistice Day as well as leave messages, memories and pictures of poppy window displays on social media.
Flags will fly at half-mast over South Shields Town Hall, which will be lit red to remember the sacrifices of Armed Forces personnel. Wreaths will be laid at each memorial privately.
Councillor Ed Malcolm, Chairman of South Tyneside Armed Forces Forum, said: "Despite the very difficult circumstances we all find ourselves in, it is only right that we continue to pay our respects on Remembrance Sunday and Armistice Day, albeit in a different way.
"Remembrance is one of the most important and poignant events in the South Tyneside calendar as we honour all those who served their country and made the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty.
"As a Borough we can still unite to remember the fallen and give thanks to our veterans and those in active service. We hope that people will join us in our online commemorations and observe the two-minute silence in tribute to our armed forces heroes."
Members of the public wishing to lay a wreath or place a cross at Borough cenotaphs are encouraged to do so over the course of the whole weekend, avoiding 11am on Remembrance Sunday.
Residents are encouraged to follow South Tyneside Council's social media channels to share Remembrance activities and celebrations on Facebook STynesideCouncil and LoveSTyneside and on Twitter @STyne_Council and @LoveSTyneside.
For further information about marking Remembrance Day and Armistice Day safely in South Tyneside, visit the Council's website at www.southtyneside.gov.uk/armedforces Residents can also pay their respects by donating to the Royal British Legion's, Every Poppy Counts appeal. Further details can be found at www.britishlegion.org.uk
More details about the impact of coronavirus on Council services, including the latest government restrictions and advice is available at www.southtyneside.gov.uk/coronavirus