A royal salute to our heroes

The seeds of common poppy only germinate when the soil in which they live is disturbed. Intense fighting during World War I decimated Europe’s physical environment causing thousands of poppies to bloom where battles once raged. (Gary H

The seeds of common poppy only germinate when the soil in which they live is disturbed. Intense fighting during World War I decimated Europe’s physical environment causing thousands of poppies to bloom where battles once raged. (Gary H

Britain's Queen Elizabeth II, Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex, Sophie, Countess of Wessex, Prince Charles, Prince of Wales and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall attend the Royal British Legion Festival of Remembrance in Royal Albert Hall, London, Saturday.

Her Majesty kept a solemn watch over proceedings from a balcony at Whitehall, alongside the Duchess of Cornwall and Duchess of Cambridge.

Across Britain, individuals and communities held two minutes of silence at 11am (1100 GMT) to remember the end of the four-year conflict which claimed around 18 million lives.

Karwai Tang via Getty Images Prince Harry and Prince William lay a wreath during the annual Remembrance Sunday memorial at The Cenotaph.

The black-clad queen watched from a balcony in central London on Sunday as her son Prince Charles laid a wreath on her behalf at the foot of the Cenotaph, a memorial honouring fallen servicemen and women.

The sombre crowd stood in near-silence as it reflected on the battles that ended a century ago, and those that have come since.

"Over the past four years, we have told the story of the First World War and the unique generation who served so bravely and made the ultimate sacrifice for their country".

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Princess Anne took the salute alongside the Secretary of State for Defence, Gavin Williamson.

"It's really, really poignant being here", said Sarah Bligh, a lieutenant commander in the Royal Navy who attended the commemorations.

She said it was her grandmother's stories of the war that inspired her to join the forces.

Big Ben will sound again today at 12.30pm, joining bells across the country and the rest of the world - an event to echo the celebrations of November 11, 1918 as news of the Armistice spread.

Attendees of the People's Procession were chosen by ballot.

The Queen and president of Germany heard prayers for a time of "harmony" during a service at Westminster Abbey marking the centenary of the Armistice.

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