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Commemorating the Armistice Centenary

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

In 1918, a joyful crowd gathered outside the Parliamentary Library for the formal announcement of the armistice to end the First World War.

This year, on Sunday 11 November, the 100-year anniversary of Armistice Day will be celebrated nationwide.

The longed-for news, ‘Armistice signed’, reached New Zealanders on the morning of Tuesday 12 November 1918. On the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, the war had finally ended.

The Government received the news late on the 11th, and arranged for word to go out and signal guns to be fired at 9:00am the following morning.

When Wellingtonians heard the guns, people deserted their "desks and benches and counters" and many gathered on Parliament’s grounds. As reported by The Evening Post,

There were songs and cheers, miscellaneous pipings and blastings, and tootings and rattlings-a roaring chorus of gladsome sounds.

Harking back to this report, the traditional two-minute silence at 11:00am on 11 November will be followed by a ‘Roaring Chorus’ of noise to mark the centenary around the country.

The coordinators of WW100-the First World War Centenary commemorations-are expecting community commemorations nationwide to incorporate a Roaring Chorus in various ways, including horns, sirens, songs, drumming, cheering, and church bells.

Parliamentarians will mark the centenary with a national commemoration at Pukeahu National War Memorial Park in Wellington on 11 November 2018. Following a two-minute silence, the bells of the National War Memorial Carillon will play a fanfare at 11:02am.

The programme for WW100 covers the entire period of the First World War centenary, from 2014 to 2019 (when our troops came home) through a range of events, activities, and projects around the country.

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