poppy day

The support our injured soldiers and bereaved families receive is unrecognisable from our predecessors and it is a comfort to a serving soldier now if he gets injured or he pays the ultimate sacrifice. He and his family will be looked after by a first rate support system providing both for them financially with lifelong help available if required.
It is of course not about dates and anniversaries, but rather about how the history of the past shapes the reality of the present, how human courage and self-sacrifice endure in the legacy that they leave for future generations.
I was part of the team that helped set up a Veterans Artisan Bakery at The Beacon- a flagship veterans support centre - near Catterick Garrison.
On the 11th month of the 11th day of the 11th hour, we will remember our fallen. We also pay tribute to the many men and women who still protect our country, through the skies, on the ground, through the shores and combating planned attacks. We also remember the ladies and gentlemen who have fallen in recent wars.
It is easy to look on your younger years through a softer lens. We talk of 'those halcyon days'; we tell children 'school days are the best days of your lives'. It is not a natural human trait to live only for today, or to ignore the lure of greener grass.
On Armistice Day, we can think of no better tribute than to give you the damning verdict on war, massacre and brutality, from
For those of us who have known the heavy weight of war - whether we have witnessed its toll on a beloved veteran, lost a soul held dear, or outlived the fight ourselves - the message of the poppy is not felt only on Remembrance Day.
Wearing a poppy is not a comment on politics or military intervention. I doubt that everyone who wears a poppy agrees with all aspects of British foreign and military policy dating back to the first ever Poppy Day in 1921. If you object to British foreign policy, about the worst way you could express that is in a decision not to wear a poppy, because that decision only impacts on some of those who face consequences of the policy - whether or not they agree with it - not on those of us who are actually responsible for the decisions.
To this day, I believe the Royal British Legion's legacy of providing necessary care to veterans and their families makes them one of the finest and most worthwhile charities.
I should probably point out that I'm not against the original meaning behind Poppy Day: remembering how Britain twice sent a whole generation of its young men off to be slaughtered, and that future generations should be able to live without the fear of enduring such violence. Yet that meaning often seems to get forgotten as Remembrance Sunday becomes a celebration of jingoism and militarism, where the victims of British aggression in wars past and present are rarely mentioned.