Edwin Lutyens’s original temporary structure for the Cenotaph was made of wood and plaster and erected as part of the Peace Day events of July 1919, at the request of Prime Minister David Lloyd George.
At its unveiling it immediately won the hearts of the public. People spontaneously covered the memorial in wreaths to the dead and the missing from The Great War, and within a week close to a million people made the pilgrimage to pay their respects.
The public’s enthusiasm led to the Cenotaph becoming a permanent and lasting memorial in Portland stone and it has since played host to the Remembrance Service for 100 years.Find out more
The Cenotaph is one of several London war memorials in our care. To protect it from weathering and pollution we carry out careful maintenance work twice a year, including water cleaning and shelter coating, to make sure it continues to provide a fitting tribute to all those who have lost their lives in Britain’s conflicts since 1914.
Discover more about our charitable work and how to support us.How to support us