The challenges of keeping everyone safe and healthy during the COVID-19 pandemic were always bound to have an impact on important community events but Dartford Borough Council is determined to ensure our town continues to pay respect those who fought and died for our freedom.
To keep everyone safe, this year’s commemoration may be different from usual but its importance remains undiminished.
No public gathering will be possible but the traditional commemoration and laying of wreaths will proceed at the War Memorial in Central Park but with a much reduced number of civic wreath-layers representing a wider community. A two-minute silence at 11.00am will give pause to remember those who have sacrificed so much and who continue to do so in conflicts around the world.
A road closure significantly shorter than usual will ensure that the period of reflection is respected appropriately.
Wreath layers representing official organisations and local groups will be invited to gather in Central Park at 10.40am and will be escorted to the war memorial to pay their respects whilst maintaining COVID-19 protocols.
We very much regret that no public gathering will be possible this year and appropriate public-health regulations will be in place. Instead, residents are invited to watch the proceedings from home via a live video stream which will be free to view on the Council’s Facebook page ‘Dartford Together’ at www.facebook.com/dartfordtogether
These are unusual and unprecedented days and we know that not being able to attend the service in person will be a great disappointment to many. Hopefully, the steps we are taking to keep everyone safe will ensure we can all gather again next year. Meanwhile, we invite you to join the nation in remembering the fallen by observing the two minutes silence from home.
Council Leader Jeremy Kite said: ‘Remembrance Day is a hugely important day for local families and for all sorts of personal reasons it’s an important day for me too. We have been working hard to create a way of ensuring the town’s remembrance can continue but it may be somewhat different from previous years. The chief thing is to ensure that any act of remembrance is compatible with keeping our community safe so we may be asking local people to co-operate with a new kind of event this year and we are planning to livestream proceedings so that everyone can unite with the act of remembrance.’