Battle of Britain Memorial


There are more than 100,000 war memorials in the UK. They take many forms, including cenotaphs, plaques, gardens and books.

As well as physical memorials, there are also databases of names of the fallen that can be searched for free and ways to donate virtual poppies online.

Those wishing to remember by way of donation to The Royal British Legion can do so here.

The Cenotaph

The Cenotaph in Whitehall is the site of the annual National Service of Remembrance, held at 11.00am on Remembrance Sunday.

Originally conceived as a temporary structure for the London Victory Parade by Sir Edwin Lutyens in 1919, a permanent design made from Portland stone was built in 1920, undecorated except for a carved wreath on each end and the words "The Glorious Dead".

Taken from the Greek for ‘empty tomb’, a cenotaph is a tomb or monument erected to honour a person or group of persons whose remains are elsewhere.

Flags flanking the sides of The Cenotaph since 2007 represent the Royal Navy, the British Army, the Royal Air Force, and the Merchant Navy.

Should you visit the site (a Google Map pin can be found here) you will always see uniformed service personnel (excluding fire and ambulance personnel) salute the Cenotaph as they pass.

The Armed Forces Memorial

Within the National Memorial Arboretum stands this stunning stone Memorial, engraved with the names of 16,000 Servicemen and women killed on duty or by terrorist action since the end of the Second World War. To this day, additional names are added and dedicated to honour those lost to ongoing conflicts around the world.

The Memorial - erected in 2007 and designed by Liam O'Connor, with sculptural elements by Ian Rank Broadley - is a perfect, peaceful location for families to remember loved ones.

Visit the National Memorial Arboretum website for more information.

Links for Research and Remembrance

The War Memorials Trust works to protect and conserve over 100,000 war memorials in the UK, and can offer advice in helping to maintain these memorials. Further information concerning the trust can be found here.

The Commonwealth War Graves Commission's online database is a searchable list of the 1.7 million men and women of the Commonwealth forces who died during the two world wars.

Additionally, you can also search through over 23,000 cemeteries, memorials and other locations where casualties of the war are commemorated worldwide.

The Veterans UK website hosts a Roll of Honour, via which you can search for individuals and print certificates.

Online memorials

If you would like to remember loved ones today with The Royal British Legion, explore our information on how to create a lasting tribute.

More information

Explore our Memorial FAQs for more information, including how to find out where someone who died in Service is buried and lists of memorials.


Related Stories