WATCH: Sunderland falls silent for Armistice Day

Sunderland fell silent today to remember Armistice Day on the eleventh hour, of the eleventh day, of the eleventh month.

By The Newsroom
Friday, 11th November 2016, 12:59 pm
Updated Wednesday, 16th November 2016, 3:08 pm
Armistice Day service at Sunderland Cenotaph & War Memorial
Armistice Day service at Sunderland Cenotaph & War Memorial

Crowds young and old gathered at the War Memorial in Burdon Road to honour those who fought for our freedom.

Maroons were set off in Mowbray Park to mark the beginning of the two-minute silence at 11am.

Armistice Day service at Sunderland Cenotaph & War Memorial

The explosives were then heard again at 11.02am to bring the observance to an end.

Representatives from various armed forces were joined by veterans, councillors, members of the public and children.

One of those marking the importance of the day was one of Sunderland’s oldest war veterans, Jack Watson.

The 93-year-old, from Silksworth, served in the 75th Shropshire Yeomanry during the Second World War.

Hundreds turn out for a two minute silence at the Tommy statue in Seaham today for Armistice day . Photo Owen Humphreys, PA.

He said: “It’s great to be here, really great.”

Sunderland Mayor Alan Emerson who presided over the service, said afterwards: “I think it’s very emotional – it brings back many thoughts and memories.

“From a personal point of view, I lost a grandfather at the Somme, on day one.

“He was one of the thousands, whose bodies were never found.

Armistice Day service at Sunderland Cenotaph & War Memorial

“Also in our local village, a family that I know – whose name is on the wall here – Sergeant John Amer, who is a Coldstream guardsman, who was killed in Afghanistan.

“So yes, there are many poignant memories.”

Armistice Day commemorates the symbolic end of the First World War, at 11am on 11 November 1918, with the signing of the agreement between the Allies and Germany, which brought hostilities on the Western Front to an end.

The city’s annual Remembrance Service and Parade will be held in the same location on Sunday.

Armistice Day service at Sunderland Cenotaph & War Memorial Dame Dorothy Primary School pupils

In Seaham, hundreds turned out to mark the day in a poignant service in the shadow of the town’s Tommy statue.

A sea of red and black pebbles were laid in the shape of a poppy at Tommy’s feet.

Armistice Day service at Sunderland Cenotaph & War Memorial 75th Shropshire Yeomanry veteran Jack Watson aged 93
Armistice Day service at Sunderland Cenotaph & War Memorial
Hundreds turn out for a two minute silence at the Tommy statue in Seaham today for Armistice day . Photo Owen Humphreys, PA.
Armistice Day service at Sunderland Cenotaph & War Memorial
Armistice Day service at Sunderland Cenotaph & War Memorial Dame Dorothy Primary School pupils
Armistice Day service at Sunderland Cenotaph & War Memorial 75th Shropshire Yeomanry veteran Jack Watson aged 93