The Last Journey of the Unknown Warrior

A Blue Badge World War One Walking Tour that follows the route taken on the morning of 11/11/20 by the cortège that bore the body of the Unknown Warrior from Victoria Station to Westminster Abbey. An unidentified British soldier had been chosen at random to represent the 300,000 nameless British war dead.

Unknown-1The text inscribed on the tomb is taken from the bible (2 Chronicles 24:16): ‘They buried him among the kings, because he had done good toward God and toward his house’.

Early in 1915, the War Office had ordered that all soldiers were to be buried where they fell. However, nearly half of the total dead from the British Empire have no known burial place to this day. Bodies were destroyed beyond recognition by shelling, lost where remains were scattered by subsequent fighting or sank where they fell into the quagmire of mud that characterised many battlefields of the Western Front.

In the week after the burial an estimated 1,250,000 people visited the Abbey, and the site is now one of the most visited war graves in the world.

As a matter of diplomatic etiquette, a head of state visiting Great Britain, lays a wreath on the tomb lying at the western end of the Abbey nave.

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