Combined marks Armistice and Remembrance Days – Executive Director of Operations and Lead Board Director for Veterans, Ben Richards reflects.

Armistice Day and Remembrance Sunday is an important time to recognise the ultimate sacrifice people have made to our country to protect our way of life. The annual Act of Remembrance is something I feel particularly passionate about as we remember the Armed Forces and their families, of all faiths and none, from both Britain and the Commonwealth. It also provides the opportunity to recognise the vital role played by the emergency services and those who have lost their lives, resulting from conflict or terrorism each year. 

As usual, teams from across the Trust, where possible, observed a two-minute silence to mark both Armistice Day (Friday 11 November at 11.00 am) and Remembrance Sunday (13th November at 11.00 am).  

This year, I am personally very proud to have been able to personally show my respect by laying a wreath on behalf of the Trust for the first time as part of the official Remembrance Sunday ceremony at Stoke Cenotaph. It was wonderful to see colleagues and their families also attending this event remembering the service and sacrifice of all those that have defended our freedoms and protected our way of life.  It was an extremely powerful and humbling experience to be part of.   

I have been reflecting on the fact that the period around Remembrance Sunday can be a really difficult and particularly emotive time of year for people who are serving and have served in our armed forces and also for their families and loved ones.  It is personally important for me that we recognise and acknowledge this.

The Staff Psychological Wellbeing Hub has also created a toolkit to help signpost people to veteran-specific support, which can be accessed through the following link Veterans Resource Pack.

Ben Richards 

Executive Director of Operations and Lead Board Director for Veterans