The Memorial Gates was officially inaugurated by Her Majesty The Queen, accompanied by HRH The Duke of Edinburgh, on 6th November 2002.
Over fifty ex-servicemen and women from the Second World War lined the road between the stone pillars, in the presence of representatives from the British Government, the Armed Services and the Commonwealth. The Band of the Brigade of Gurkhas played traditional marching tunes while the spectators awaited the Queen's arrival. As Her Majesty formally inaugurated the Memorial, poppies blew from the urns on top of the pillars, and State Trumpeters played the Last Post at the end of one minute's silence.
The Memorial is an important symbol for modern British society, which looks to the future as much as to the past. With many descendants of those who fought in the last war now living in Britain, this Memorial serves to remind us all of shared sacrifices in times of greatest need. It reminds us of those who have made possible the freedoms we enjoy today.
We are guardians of a precious flame, and it is our duty not only to keep it burning brightly but to keep it replenished for the decades ahead.
The Queen’s Commonwealth message to the 53 member states