WESTMINSTER ABBEY to mark the
60TH ANNIVERSARY of the KOREAN WAR
The bravery and dedication of those who fought with conviction in the Korean War will be formally marked with a parade and muster of Korean Veterans and a Service of Thanksgiving at Westminster Abbey, on Thursday 11 July 2013.
Some 100,000 British troops served on the Korean peninsula, many of them National Servicemen, as part of a United Nations force after the North Koreans invaded the South in June 1950. They fought for peace alongside Servicemen from the United States of America, Canada, Australia, India and many other UN member states.
An armistice was signed on 27 July 1953, by which point over 1,000 British Servicemen had lost their lives and some 1,060 taken prisoner by the North Koreans. Most famously, nearly the whole of the 1st Battalion The Gloucestershire Regiment (now part of The Rifles) were killed or taken prisoner during the Battle of the River Imjin in April 1951.
Minister of State for Defence Personnel, Welfare and Veterans, Mark Francois said:
“Sixty years on the Korean War remains an international conflict in which Britain played a significant role and one that should never be forgotten. The commemorations to mark the 60th anniversary will, I hope, be a fitting way for the nation to give thanks to both the veterans, and those who paid the ultimate price in a bitterly fought campaign.”
Approximately 500 British Veterans from the Korean War will march from Horse Guards to Westminster Abbey, remembering those involved in the campaign. A dedicated Service of Thanksgiving at Westminster Abbey will follow.
Those wishing to attend are asked to apply by email to PersTrg-DSSec-CECTMailbox@mod.uk or in writing to:
- Ceremonial, Events and Commemorations Team
Level 6, Zone C
In addition the British Korean Veterans Association (BKVA) will attend a General Assembly of the International Federation of Korean War Veterans Association in Seoul, 23-27 July 2013, and a Korean War Commemoration Day at the National Memorial Arboretum on 27 July 2013.
Commemorations to mark the 50th Anniversary of The Korean War included a service at Panmunjom on the border of North and South Korea, where the 1953 Korean Armistice Agreement was signed and a parade and march past of 1500 veterans on Horse Guards and a Service of Thanksgiving at Westminster Abbey on 9 July 2003.