75th anniversary of VE Day - information and activities

#Dance4VEDay

The Heritage Service is hosting #Dance4VEDay - marking 75 years since VE Day (Victory in Europe Day) - by trying to create the largest remote dancing flashmob in honour of the occasion. Despite physical celebrations across the nation being put on hold, you can help us create the flashmob to celebrate VE Day and pull together to support local causes.

Join us at 4pm on Friday 8 May for the dance along, which you can check out on the Heritage Service’s FacebookTwitter and Instagram pages. There is a series of great dance workshops to get you in the mood ahead of the day, so make sure you check them out. More details can be found here.

VE Day gives communities the opportunity to come together to remember the service and sacrifice of the Second War War generation and to learn from their experience as we face some of the most challenging times in our history. 

Heritage from Home

Bounce Theatre is organising 'Heritage From Home', an arts project involving older residents in isolation. It is inspired by 'Things to do in a Blackout', a project which involved over 100 young people from Kingston upon Thames and looked at the rise in crime during WW2. Heritage from Home members receive a weekly newsletter with arts and craft activities.

Over 80 older people signed up over Easter. Topics include writing letters from the War Babies of yesterday to the Corona Babies of today and top tips for throwing a house party VE Day style. The work produced will be shared at an exhibition at the National Archives in November.

If you would like more details about the project please email [email protected].

Memories from the home front

To commemorate the 75th anniversary of V.E. Day, Digital Drama has created a new short film using little seen WW2 archive footage from London’s Screen Archives. Supported by the National Lottery Heritage Fund and working with borough Arts & Heritage departments, 25 volunteers captured the memories of 90 older residents in the 6 London boroughs of Camden, Ealing, Hounslow, Kingston, Croydon and Merton. With thanks to Alfriston Day Centre in Kingston whose users participated in this project.

The first film can be viewed here.

National events

The Government have published a programme to mark the 75th anniversary of VE Day in a manner consistent with current measures to contain the spread of COVID-19. There is lots of advice, tips and downloads available online for people to celebrate and mark the occasion from the safety of their homes. 

 The national commemorations taking place on VE Day include:

  • A two-minute silence of remembrance at 11am
  • A pre-recorded televised address from Her Majesty The Queen at 9pm.

Royal British Legion

The Royal British Legion is also calling on the nation to mark the 75th anniversary of VE Day on 8 May from home. Events include national moments of remembrance and thanksgiving, beginning with a VE Day 75 livestream and Two Minute Silence at 11am, followed by an evening of memories and music on the BBC at 8pm and a UK-wide singalong to Vera Lynn’s We’ll Meet Again at 9pm.

Great British Bunting

You can also make your own ‘Great British Bunting’ to display in your window at home. Templates and instructions are available from BBC Local Radio, who are inviting people to get in touch to tell them about their inspiration behind their bunting.