VE Day 75: Pay the greatest tribute by staying at home

VE Day 75: Pay the greatest tribute by staying at home

Published by May Norman at 6:55am 7th May 2020. (Updated at 6:59am 7th May 2020)

North Yorkshire Police issue advice ahead of bank holiday weekend

  • Police across North Yorkshire are urging people to stay at home and keep safe during the bank holiday weekend.
  • It's released some tips and ideas on what can be done at home when celebrating VE Day.

Police and partners in North Yorkshire are asking residents to pay the greatest tribute to the second world war generation by celebrating VE Day at home and keeping them safe.

This year celebrations will be very different and not what was ever envisaged when planning for this poignant day began all those months ago, but there are still lots of ways to commemorate the sacrifices made to ensure our freedom and peace.  

Assistant Chief Constable Mike Walker said:

“It is right that, on the 75th anniversary of the end of fighting in Europe, we join together safely, to remember and give thanks to all those who played their part in bringing peace, so that we could live our lives in freedom.  

"Even though street parties and other gatherings have been cancelled, we can still celebrate, but in a different way.

“We will remember those that made the ultimate sacrifice, those that returned home and all who fought on the Home Front too and importantly thank the veterans alive today for what they did for us.

"However, it remains of utmost importance that people commemorate at home, so we can protect the NHS and save lives. At this moment in time, in this very different world, the greatest tribute you can pay our veterans is to stay at home. They went to war for us, the very least we can do is stay at home for them.”

Richard Flinton, Chair of the North Yorkshire Local Resilience Forum, added:

“At this poignant moment in our lives I ask you to reflect on the togetherness and community spirit that would have been celebrated the end of the Second World War in Europe and which you have shown over the past weeks during the current crisis.

“Although we cannot stand together physically due to the Covid-19 restrictions, we can stand together as a county in remembrance and thanksgiving and show that however great the challenge we face – we will stick together to overcome it.”

The force has put together a list of virtual activities and events to help people celebrate safely, however, officers do ask that in the true community spirit of the second world war that people consider neighbours, and remember that some may not in a position to celebrate, they may be separated from family and friends, or maybe bereaved, or feel intimidated by noise.

Please look out for the vulnerable, lonely and isolated and include them, or be respectful of their wishes if they don’t want to join in.

Top tips for a great virtual VE Day 75

Friday 8 May:

9am: Voices of War – experience Imperial War Museums’ soundscape featuring the recollections of people who witnessed VE Day. Visit iwm.org.uk and follow IWM on Twitter and Facebook.

11am: Join the nation as we pause for a 2-minute silence to remember those who lost their lives

11.15am:  Join the Royal British Legion's lives stream

12 noon: Learn to Lindy Hop with English Heritage’s live dance tutorial. Nancy Hitzig will help you get the hang of this popular wartime craze. 

2pm: A Second World War-inspired makeover with English Heritage’s 1940s makeup tutorial.

2pm: Take part in The National Museum of the Royal Navy, the National Army Museum and the Royal Air Force Museums’ live webinar with renowned historian James Holland and National Army Museum curator Dr Peter Johnson to discuss the events that brought the Second World War in Europe to an end in 1945. Register now

3pm: Raise a cup of tea, glass of wine or beaker of squash to the heroes of WW2 in the ‘Nation’s Toast’.

4pm: VE Day 75 Anniversary watch live as Dan Snow takes us through the events as they happened. He’ll also be showcasing some of your creative entries as part of his VE Day Creative Challenge.

4pm: Victory Dance Class with SwingdanceUK, teaching you to Jitterbug and Jive from the safety of your own home in this live beginners’ dance class.

5pm: Show off your moves and join others from around the world in an English Heritage dance-along, complete with a Lindy Hop dance troupe and band.

5.30pm: Get your singing voices at the ready and tune in to Gareth Malone’s #GreatBritishHomeChorus on YouTube for a VE Day special performance.

6pm: We’ll Meet Again for VE Day 75 with Katherine Jenkins. The Royal Albert Hall will host to a very special concert behind closed doors streamed on their YouTube channel. 

9pm: Her Majesty The Queen will send a message to the nation at 9pm, the exact moment her father, King George VI, gave a radio address in 1945.

Just after 9pm: Join your neighbours through the window or on your doorstep to take part in the national singalong of Dame Vera Lynn’s ‘We’ll Meet Again’.