Great Pilgrimage 90 Parade and One Hundred Days Ceremony
A decade after the end of WW1, the British Legion (as it was then known) organised for veterans and war widows to visit the battlefields of the Somme and Ypres before marching to the Menin Gate in Ypres on 8th August 1928.
Exactly 90 years later, thousands of Legion representatives will recreate the 1928 Battlefields Pilgrimage and visit the same battlefields and then, on 8th August 2018, parade their branch standard and a wreath along the same route to the Menin Gate for the One Hundred Days ceremony to commemorate the last 100 days of WW1 and represent an entire generation that served while defending their country.
The Great Pilgrimage: British Pathé
Members of the public are encouraged to come and gather in Ypres Market Square as spectators on 8th August 2018 to watch the parade and the One Hundred Days ceremony (N.B. there is no public access to the Menin Gate during the event so a large screen will be provided in the Market Square to view the ceremony). Following the ceremony, there will be an afternoon of exhibitions and musical performances for all.
Public Programme (timings are approximate and subject to change). All public activities are in the Market Square:
10:00 - Exhibition tents open on Market Square. Exhibitors include The Royal British Legion's Poppy Shop, Membership Department, 2018 Thank You Movement, Operations, Public Affairs and Public Policy and Remembrance Travel, the Commonwealth War Graves Commission, the Last Post Association, Newton Newton Flags, Flagmakers and a general information tent.
12:00 - Legion and community representatives parade through the Market Square to the Menin Gate
13:00 - One Hundred Days Ceremony at the Menin Gate (invited guests only) can be watched by the public on a large screen in the Market Square
13:45 - Parade returns through the Market Square
14:15 - 16:30 - Afternoon of comradeship and entertainment with musical performances on the band stand and stage in the Market Square
14:15 The London Welsh Male Voice Choir
14:50 Sam Jefferson
15:15 Gala Concert featuring The Band of Her Majesty's Royal Marines Scotland and The Central Band of The Royal British
15:35 The Central Band of The Royal British Legion
16:15 Grand Finale - The Central Band of The Royal British Legion, The London Welsh Male Voice Choir and Sam Jefferson
16:30 - Event Ends
Alternatively, Leger Holidays are organising a full 5-day public battlefield tour to coincide with the event which will also be in Ypres on 8th August 2018 to allow those on this tour to spectate at the event.
Official Members tour
Registration for the official branch tour has now closed.
Two representatives from every Legion branch that has registered for the Legion's official Great Pilgrimage 90 tour will take part in two days of battlefield tours and then carry their Standard and wreath on the parade on 8th August 2018.
Image credit: © Imperial War Museums (Q 47901)
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