Medallions Ceremony Marks 100th Anniversary of Remembrance Day

This morning, Acting Mayor Marianne Alto was joined by Royal Canadian Legion Trafalgar/Pro Patria Branch President Patti Stockton and Chair of the Victoria Poppy Fund Angus Stanfield for a ceremony to mark the 100th anniversary of Remembrance Day with the installation of memorial medallions along Shelbourne Street. 

The City of Victoria has installed 16 medallions with the phrases “Memorial Avenue” and “Lest We Forget” on the top of existing street and traffic signs along both sides of Shelbourne Street, from North Dairy Road to Pembroke Street. A medallion will be installed at Begbie Green at a future date.

The medallions recognize the London Plane trees that were planted along Shelbourne Street in 1921 as a memorial to the soldiers from British Columbia who sacrificed their lives during the First World War.

The installation is a continuation of the medallions that the District of Saanich designed, manufactured and mounted last year on street and traffic signs along Shelbourne Street, from North Dairy Road to Mount Douglas Park. This ‘Road of Remembrance’ is Canada’s oldest memorial of this type.

The medallions depict the leaf of a London Plane tree, representing the memorial trees that were planted along Shelbourne Street. The leaf is red, symbolizing the deep respect for the many who gave their lives for Canada, British Columbia and Greater Victoria during the First World War. The leaf is flanked by two poppy symbols, which are the registered trademark of The Royal Canadian Legion, Dominion Command and used under licence. 

“The City of Victoria is honoured to contribute to this Road of Remembrance, which recognizes those who sacrificed their lives to ensure we live in a free and peaceful country,” said Acting Mayor Marianne Alto. "The thriving London Plane trees along this road testify to the strength, commitment and courage of those who serve our country. We thank every one of them."

This year marks the 100th anniversary of the establishment of Armistice Day, the precursor to our modern Remembrance Day. First observed in 1919, Armistice Day commemorated the armistice agreement that ended the First World War on Monday, November 11, 1918, at 11 am, the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month.