News article

British Embassy Bangkok marks the 100th anniversary of WWI

This world location news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

The short service and wreath laying are held to commemorate those who lost their lives in the war.

The 4th of August 2014 marks the 100th anniversary of the day Britain entered one of the costliest conflicts in history – the First World War – with fighting continuing until the 11th of November 1918, Armistice Day. The British Embassy Bangkok held a short service and wreath laying at the Embassy War Memorial to commemorate those who lost their lives in the war, including members of the Royal Thai Expeditionary Force. Thailand was the only independent South East Asian nation to have fought in WW1. Attending the short service and wreath laying were Paul Bute, British Chargé d’Affaires, other Heads of Mission, War Veterans’ organisations, and representatives of other associations and societies in Bangkok.

Paul Bute, British Chargé d’Affaires, said:

The First World War Centenary offers an opportunity to reflect on the horrors of war and the importance of preventing conflict. Today’s event not only commemorates those who lost their lives in the First World War but also serves as a reminder that countries who fought against each other can come together to promote peace and stability in the modern world. While the world is a more peaceful place now than it was 100 years ago, the challenge of conflict remains. Multilateral organisations, including the United Nations, the European Union, and ASEAN, have a key role to play in building stability and prosperity, and in preventing conflict. We will continue to work with all our partners, to promote peace and prosperity around the world.

Further information

Service presided over by: The Reverend Timothy Eady of Christ Church Bangkok.

Wreath laying lead by: Mr Paul Bute, British Chargé d’Affaires

Followed by: Colonel Chris Luckham OBE, British Defence Attaché; Mr Derek Brook, Chairman of the Royal British Legion Thailand; other Heads of Mission, War Veterans’ organisations and representatives of associations and societies in Bangkok.

The French Embassy will provide a focal point for International Community’s First World War Centenary Commemorations on the 11th of November. The French Embassy will host a reception and exhibition on the Royal Siamese Expeditionary Force following the annual War Veteran’s Organization of Thailand (WVO) wreath laying at the monument in the North West end of Sanam Luang. Complementary events include today’s short service and wreath laying, the traditional Remembrance Sunday service at the British Embassy on Sunday 9th November and the Royal British Legion service at Kanchanaburi on Tuesday 11th November.

Globally the UK Government is observing six national and international events to commemorate the Centenary.

  • 4th August 2014 - National and international services in London, Cardiff, Glasgow, Belfast and at the Commonwealth War Graves Commission St Symphorien Cemetery in Belgium to mark the 100th anniversary of Britain declaring war on Germany.

  • 25th April 2015 - Events to mark the start of the Battle of Gallipoli. The campaign was a disaster, with more than 44,000 Allied soldiers killed.

  • 31st May – 1st June 2016 - Events to mark the naval Battle of Jutland. This was the largest naval battle, and the only full-scale clash of battleships, of the war.

  • 1st July 2016 - Events to mark the first day of the Battle of the Somme. In just 4 months the British suffered around 420,000 casualties, the French 200,000, and the Germans 500,000 casualties.

  • June – November 2017 - Events to mark the Battle of Passchendaele,
    also known as the Third Battle of the Ypres.

  • 11th November 2018 - Germany and the Allies signed the Armistice agreement and fighting on the Western Front ceased at 11am.