RESIDENTS across Dorset are being asked to emulate the support shown for the Clap for Carers when paying their respects as part of Remembrance Sunday this weekend.

BCP Council and Royal British Legion Clubs across the conurbation are advising people to take to their windows and doorsteps and witness a two minutes’ silence at 11am on Sunday November 8.

The council’s plans to host private civic events have been assessed against the national guidance for Remembrance Sunday and can still be carried out in a safe way adhering to all guidance and regulations so will go ahead.

Short private services will also take place in Bournemouth and Poole on Wednesday November 11, with representation from the armed forces.

Councillor David Flagg, Chairman of BCP Council said: “It is important that we mark Remembrance Sunday, despite us not being able to commemorate in the way we would normally under these difficult circumstances this year.

“We encourage those who wish to mark the occasion to follow the live TV and radio coverage from the safety of their own home, and pause for the Two Minute Silence in their home or on their doorstep.”

Ward councillor for Creekmoor Judes Butt, whose father served in North Africa, has been championing the Remembrance Sunday's two-minute doorstep silence on social media and has informed members of her ward to take part.

She said: “As Remembrance ceremonies can't happen, I’m keen to promote the ‘on your doorsteps at your windows’ notion and bring all communities together.

“Our war heroes fought so valiantly, many making the ultimate sacrifice, loved ones at home enduring the pain of separation, deprivation and loss.

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“Covid-19 necessitates us all to make sacrifices, enduring our own fears and sorrows in personal loss and hardships.

“As we journey through the next four weeks and beyond, let's stop for two minutes silence and reflect together ‘on our doorsteps and at our windows’ at 11am this Sunday and on Wednesday November 11, remembering what was done for us by the bravest of the brave and all those who gave all their tomorrows so we could have our today."

Members of the Royal British Legion have advised veterans to pay their respects for their comrades from their homes.

Club secretary at Winton & Moordown Royal British Legion Club Julie Griffiths said: “We are obviously very sad that the memorial events are able to be held this year.

“It is a shame as we usually have a good representation by the club at the ceremony at the cenotaph and most people come back to the club afterwards to catch up.

“We have veterans and cadets come up and it is usually a full house but obviously we won’t be able to do that this year.

“The older generation are going to be upset at the fact that they won’t be able to attend a proper service, but we advise them to pay their respects from the safety of their homes.”

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People can still go down to the cenotaph and pay tributes in groups of six over the weekend but have been encouraged to maintain social distancing and adhere to the Covid-19 guidelines.

The ongoing pandemic has also affected this year’s Poppy Appeal, with 12,000 of the 40,000 poppy sellers nationally not be able to hit the streets in the usual way due to volunteers being elderly and suffering from existing health conditions.

People who are able to sell poppies for the Royal British Legion will be advised to wear a mask, sanitise their hands regularly, and keep behind a table where possible to help maintain social distancing, yet the Royal British Legion has .

Julie added: “We had our poppies delivered a couple of weeks ago, but we are really stuck as we are not open at the moment.

“It is a shame because we were just getting geared up for it.

“We haven’t been able to get as many people out selling poppies this year as most of our members are elderly and vulnerable and people haven’t been able to sell poppies outside of supermarkets.

“After the lockdown, we will look to host a celebration and memorial day in January so people are able to meet up again and pay their respects as a group.”

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Whilst charity shops and Royal British Legion Clubs have had to close due to the ongoing virus, people can still purchased poppies from sellers out on the streets, as well as supermarkets and other stores including Tesco, Sainsbury's, Morrisons and Pets At Home.

However, in order to avoid disappointment, people are recommended to go online to get one.

All the enamel and paper poppies on sale from volunteers are also available online - with a choice of donation amounts available.