Commonwealth War Graves Week

Organisers: Commonwealth War Graves Commission, M&C Saatchi

What it is:

This year, the Commonwealth War Graves Commission in the United Kingdom launched a new initiative encouraging people to find out more about the people in their area who died during the two world wars. The campaign focused on an online postcode locator tool developed by M&C Saatchi, enabling people to quickly find people in their area who made the ultimate sacrifice. The initiative also featured a digital festival, with a range of online broadcasts, and a flower contest inviting wider public participation.

Why we like it:

The campaign demonstrated a perfect blend of curiosity, reverence, and optimism through its combination of the postcode locator tool, encouragement for people to pay their respects at war graves themselves, and a flower contest bringing a lighter touch. With over 300,000 war casualties commemorated across the UK, the initiative was an important reminder of the real-life stories behind the numbers. Finally, the digital aspect of the campaign made it accessible from home, ensuring awareness and engagement despite the pandemic.

PR Guru comment:

“This is a poignant and moving initiative by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission. The ‘wildflower remembrance garden’ is a nice touch, whilst the postcode locator – the brainchild of M&C Saatchi – harnesses technology to make what is a global campaign more personal and more local. This latest campaign fits well with the CWGC’s mission to commemorate the fallen, without glorifying war.”

– Lionel Zetter

Lionel Zetter is a former president of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations and former Chairman of PRCA Public Affairs. He has run his own agency, and worked in-house and as a freelancer. He has won ‘Lifetime Achievement’ and ‘Outstanding Contribution’ awards from the CIPR, PRCA and Public Affairs News. He is the Founder Patron of Conservatives in Communications, Vice President of PublicAffairsAsia and a Director of the Enterprise Forum
Photos: Commonwealth War Graves Commission