Plymouth celebrates Commonwealth Day 12 March 2018

Event: Commonwealth Flag Raising Ceremony

Venue: Plymouth Guildhall Flagpoles

Date: Monday 12 March 2018

Time: 10am

Plymouth will be marking Commonwealth Day at a special flag raising ceremony to mark the occasion on 12 March.

Lord Mayor Cllr Wendy Foster.

Lord Mayor of Plymouth, Councillor Wendy Foster will read out the Commonwealth Affirmation then Plymouth City Council Leader, Councillor Ian Bowyer, will read message from the Commonwealth Secretary-General, the Right Honourable Patricia Scotland. There will then be a flag raising ceremony.

At the same time, 1,000 other Commonwealth flags will be raised in 38 Commonwealth countries and the 11 ships of P&O and Cunard Line will also be raising the Commonwealth flag at various locations as they cruise around the world. Scouts will also be raising the Commonwealth flag in The Bahamas, Belize, Grenada, Jamaica, Malaysia, Maldives, Republic of Malta, Mauritius, New Zealand, Samoa, Sri Lanka and Trinidade and Tobago.

This will be followed by an act of commemoration at the Minster Church of St Andrew to reflect the involvement and sacrifices of so many representatives from around the Commonwealth who supported this country in the conflicts of the past 100 years, when a poem written by Plymouth’s Poet Laureat, Thom Boulton, will be read out.

This year the focus of Commonwealth Day will be how the Commonwealth can address global challenges and work to create a better future for all citizens through sub-themes of sustainability, safety, prosperity and fairness.

Lord Mayor of Plymouth Councillor Wendy Foster said: “I am delighted to represent Plymouth on Commonwealth Day, a truly global event.

“The ceremony in March will bring together the local community and knowing that partners from across the Commonwealth will be raising their flag at the same time shows us as united.”

The Secretary-General of the Commonwealth of Nations, The Right Honourable Patricia Scotland QC, said: “Fly a Flag is a wonderful opportunity for local communities to come together to celebrate the remarkable diversity and inclusiveness of the Commonwealth, and the many ways in which the lives and livelihoods of its 2.4 billion citizens are enriched through Commonwealth connection and cooperation. By working together locally and globally we learn from one another, and make progress for the good of all.”

Bruno Peek LVO OBE OPR – Originator and Commonwealth Pageantmaster, of ‘Fly a Flag for the Commonwealth’, said: “I am amazed how quickly this event has caught the public imagination in the UK and around the Commonwealth. We are only in our fourth year, and the participation of so many people of all ages and from all walks of life shows the enormous potential of this project and of the Commonwealth.

“It is a positive and uplifting way for people to link with and assist fellow citizens of the Commonwealth in a family that spans across oceans and continents. There is a real sense of promise, and hope for the future in this current troubled world of ours.”



10.00 am       Flag Raising Ceremony (Bugler will sound the “still”)

–         Lord Mayor will read the affirmation

–         Response by the Leader Cllr Ian Bowyer

10.15 am –    Raise the Flag by Navy Personnel

10.20 am      Photograph by the Flag Poles

10.25 am      Photograph on Guildhall Steps


10.30 am       Commemorative Act – marking the centenary of WW1

Venue: St Andrew’s Church

Greeting from Church Representative

Lord Mayor to extinguish candles

2 minutes silence

Light one candle (this will remain alight for the next 12 months in the Church)

Poem written by Plymouth’s Poet Laurate, Thom Boulton, to be read by Lord Mayor’s Chaplain (Reverend Appleby)

10.50            ENDS