“My dear friends, this is your hour.”
Winston Churchill on VE Day.
Had it not been for the lockdown due to Covid-19, this Friday, 8th May, we, like so many others around the country, would have been off out to help celebrate what is sure to be a memorable day for many, the 75th anniversary since the end of World War II (albeit Japan held out until 15th August before finally surrendering).
Instead of the mass gatherings and events planned to be held, not only to celebrate the historic day, but to also remember all those individuals who lost their lives fighting for the arrival of that day, people are being encouraged to hold their own family VE Day celebrations in their back gardens or outside the front of their homes, so that as a community we can come together to mark the day (whilst maintaining social distancing).
There aren’t many families that weren’t affected by the war, my granny lost her brother in November 1943, but she also met her future husband, my grandfather, and her other brother was shipped off to Canada, but came back in love with a Canadian lass, who a few years later he married before returning to Canada and remaining there for the rest of their lives.
|Francis (D. 1943)|
|Michael (D. 2010)|
What does VE Day stand for?
How to host a VE Day street party
To kick your day off why not get in the spirit and maybe dress up in 1940’s clothes and create some delicious foods for your picnic with the 1904’s in mind. You could decorate the outside of your homes, or your back gardens with home-made bunting, just like they did in 75 years ago. The BBC are encouraging the public to make their own bunting to display in their homes over VE Day and the weekend. They’ve even created a step-by-step guide and templates to print out so you can make your own bunting, kids will love getting stuck into these crafting ideas: Discover all of their resources here. Alternatively you can buy your bunting and flags from Not On The High Street: British flag bunting. Why not, along with your neighbours, take chairs and tables either into your back gardens or out in front of your house along with your flags and bunting to celebrate with a picnic; ensuring that all households maintain a 2m distance rule. If the weather isn’t kind, you could always host an afternoon tea indoors with your household and invite friends and family to join you via zoom or FaceTime.
VE Day celebrations food ideas
Picnic food is the best kind of food, and perfect for any outdoor celebrations. So if you’re gathering in your front garden or on your doorstep, bring some delicious food along with you; sausage rolls, sandwiches, Victoria sponge, salad, quiche, home made lemonade, get the kids involved by getting them making fairy cakes and icing them with the flag, or simply have red, white and blue ones…
All those taking part in marking this day in history, there is a timetable of activity to help with planning your day:
- BBC One will lead a poignant two-minute silence to mark the 75th anniversary of the end of the Second World War.
How are you going to be celebrating VE Day?