Burghead Bay Beach in Armistice Day celebration

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The National Theatre of Scotland has announced that Burghead Bay Beach is one of six Scottish beaches taking part in Danny Boyle’s Armistice Day commission for 14-18 NOW, which marks the centenary of the end of the First World War.

The other beaches are: St Ninian’s Isle beach, West Sands in St Andrews, Scapa beach in Orkney, Ayr Beach, and Cula Bay beach on the isle of Benbecula in the Outer Hebrides.

On 11 November 2018, the public is invited to gather on these beaches for an informal, nationwide gesture of remembrance for the men and women who left their home shores during the First World War.

The events in all six locations centre around the drawing of a large-scale portrait of a casualty from the First World War with a connection to the local community. The portrait will be designed by sand artists Sand In Your Eye and will be washed away as the tide comes in. In addition, the public will be asked to join in by creating silhouettes of people in the sand, remembering the millions of lives lost or changed forever by the conflict. The scale of the sand art in each location will be weather-dependant.

Scottish poet Carol Ann Duffy has been invited by Danny Boyle to write a new poem, which will be read by individuals, families and communities as they gather on the beaches across the UK on 11 November. Copies of the poem will be available at the beaches for those who wish to come together or to offer their own personal contribution.

Local communities in all six locations are encouraged to come to a workshop ahead of the event, with the Moray workshop to be held in Forres Town Hall on Saturday 3 November.

During the workshop, led by a representative from the local community, public will learn details on how they can become a part of the single biggest event in the UK on Armistice Day. There will be an opportunity to listen to and share stories of local heroes who fell or returned; worked the land or tended to the sick during the great war as well as exploring war-time poetry.

Those interested in attending the workshops are required to register via this link.

The public is also invited to explore an online gallery of portraits of some of the men and women who served in the First World War, and select someone to say a personal goodbye to either via social media or as they gather in person on beaches on 11 November. The images are drawn from the Imperial War Museum’s ‘Lives of the First World War’ which aims to tell 8 million stories of those who served from Britain and the Commonwealth. Visitors to the website can also add portraits of members of their family or community who contributed to the First World War.