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How you can join in VE celebrations across West Norfolk

How you can join in VE celebrations across West Norfolk

Published by Beth Pridding
1:30pm 8th May 2020.

As the UK marks 75 years since VE Day, celebrations are still going ahead in West Norfolk - although slightly different to what was initially planned. 

Social distancing guidelines are still in place across the country, so groups across the area have been hard at work to come up with things we can all do to mark the day which signified the end of the Second World War. 

The Borough Council of King’s Lynn & West Norfolk, in conjunction with Stories of Lynn and King’s Lynn & District RAFA have put together a programme of activities to help people celebrate the 75th anniversary of VE Day and to take time to think about the sacrifices so many made on behalf of the rest of us.

Activities online include making table decorations from recycled materials, making paper hats, bunting and flags, baking a 1940's recipe, plane spotting with an ARP Warden's chart, taking a 1940's dance class, and of course having a party in your house or garden.  The country will raise a teacup or glass at 3pm to toast the heroes - both then and now during this current crisis.  

The festivities in west Norfolk will finish with a disco hosted by Chair of Festival Too, Mark Stanford. Tune in to Mark's mixcloud from 7.30pm for a mix of the best 70’s, 80’s and 90’s music, leading into the address from HM The Queen, and the following nationwide singing of "We’ll meet again" – the classic World War Two song from Dame Vera Lynn.

Deputy leader of the borough council, Cllr Elizabeth Nockolds, said:

“It is disappointing that not only us, but the whole country has had to put our event plans on hold for VE Day. But we felt we couldn’t let the day go past without having some sort of celebration in commemoration of this momentous occasion."

On May 8, 1945, the Allied forces in Europe formally accepted a surrender from Germany - eight days after the death of Adolf Hitler. 

The day has been marked across the continent ever since. 

The Mayor of King's Lynn and West Norfolk will be visiting people in their homes - through video call - to celebrate the historic day with them. 

Councillor Geoff Hipperson said:

“I am looking forward to being a small part of people’s celebrations. It’s going to be interesting to see how people are marking the occasion. I am aware of several front garden parties which will give the impression of a street party but by following the social distancing guidelines. I am also looking forward to seeing all the photos that people send in. I will be picking the best decorated home from those sent in on our social media channels and then once the restrictions are lifted, I will be inviting the winning family for afternoon tea in the parlour and a VIP tour of Stories of Lynn.”

At 2.50pm, he will also say thank you to staff at the Queen Elizabeth hospital over video call. 

Councillor Geoff Hipperson will be thanking staff for all of their hard work through the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Professor Steve Barnett, Chairman of the QEH, said:

“We are delighted that the QEH will play such a central part in Friday’s VE Day celebrations as an organisation that is very much at the heart of the local community in West Norfolk. We are incredibly grateful that the Mayor will be taking the time to recognise the efforts of our staff and their very clear focus on delivering safe and compassionate care to our patients as we respond to the challenges of COVID-19. Thank you to our local community for their fantastic support in recent months, which has inspired our staff during this very difficult period."