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Rural France to ring bells for historic WWI Armistice

Rural mairies across France are being invited to ring all the bells in their village at 11h today (Sunday November 11) to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the 1918 First World War Armistice.

Rural mayoral group l’Association des Maires Ruraux de France (AMRF) is inviting all villages to take part in the event, named “#ÀTouteVolée, meaning the bells will ring “in full force”.

Any buildings with a functioning bell can participate - including bell towers, churches, convents, monasteries, mairies and schools.

The 100th anniversary of the Armistice is today, commemorating 100 years since the end of the First World War.

The AMRF has especially invited mairies to involve their local school children in the event, and make it an educational experience. This can also help families to remember any relatives who were involved in the conflict, the AMRF said.

The act of ringing bells is a way to remember the sacrifice of soldiers and civilians who died for France in the years 1914-1918, the AMRF said, as well as those who would later die in the Second World War (1939-1945).

It added: “This is the time to remember - throughout the country - the sense of values shared by the nation for the Republic, and above all, looking towards [its] youth.”

The AMRF brings together and represents mayors in communes with fewer than 3,500 inhabitants, across France - numbering around 10,000 mayors in total.

Created in 1971, it desccribes itself as a cross-party, politically-independent network, and seeks to represent, protect and encourage rural mayoral activities nationwide.

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