Remembrance Day: Archive highlights

We will remember them

Every year the UK remembers those who have died in conflict on 11 November, the day that the First World War ended.

2020 also marks 100 years since the unveiling ceremony by King George V on 11 November 1920 of the Sir Edward Lutyens designed Cenotaph. It was only meant to be a temporary structure but the memorial has now been the focus of the UK's remembrance for a century. 

Unique footage and stills from IWM's collection of the end of the First World War

IWM holds one of the finest and extensive First World War archives in the world. Scenes of cheering crowds in London on Armistice Day is just one of the sequences in our showreel to demonstrate the range of footage available of the First Word War and it's aftermath. The consequences of war are also conveyed with amputee soldiers, a temporary cemetery in France and the unveiling of the Cenotaph.

Showreel sequences

Section 1. Armistice Day - scenes in the Charing Cross area of central London, 11th November 1918. Film IWM 505 

Section 2. Prime Minister, David Lloyd George, walks through cheering crowds and is driven off by car,  11th November 1918. Film IWM 664a

Section 3. Refugees returning to their home towns, probably the Le Cateau road, Western Front, 11th-18th November 1918. Film IWM 367  

Section 4. Amputee soldiers at the Army rehabilitation centre at Roehampton (Autumn 1917) Film IWM 1098  

Section 5. A temporary British cemetery in France, possibly Thelus. Film IWM 505 

Section 6. The coffin of the Unknown Warrior carried along the dockside at Dover, 10 November 1920. Film IWM 505 

Section 7. King George V lays a wreath on the coffin of the Unknown Soldier and unveils the Cenotaph, 11 November 1920. Film IWM 505

cenotaph whitehall 1920
© IWM (Q 31513). The Cenotaph at Whitehall for the unveiling ceremony, 11 November 1920, the second anniversary of the Armistice

design for cenotaph
© IWM (Art.IWM ART 3991 b). The Cenotaph : original design for the structure in Whitehall. Edwin Lutyens, 1919

© IWM (Q 3365). Officers of the 1st Battalion, Irish Guards, read details of the Armistice with Germany to their men, 12 November 1918

The Cemetery, Etaples, 1919 by John Lavery

© IWM (Art.IWM ART 2884). The Cemetery, Etaples, 1919 by John Lavery

Explore more Remembrance themed collection material in the IWM archive

Need help with a project? If you need help sourcing archive footage please contact the media licensing team