No need to leave home as all the VE Day celebrations you need are right on your doorstep

The 75th anniversary marking the end of the bloody conflict in Europe takes place this week

By Alison Bagley
Tuesday, 5th May 2020, 11:35 am

Despite coronavirus causing the cancellation of all official events marking the anniversay of Victory in Europe (VE) Day, people will still be celebrating the day during lockdown.

In 1945, tables laden with rations were dragged out of houses to allow men, women and children to mark the unconditional surrender of Nazi Germany to the Allies and the end of the Second World War.

This year would have seen the 75th anniversary of that victory and people are being encouraged once again to share the event with socially-distanced neighbours.

Barry Hale will be performing for neighbours at a socially-distanced gig in his front garden

In Rothwell, singer Barry Hale will be entertaining his fellow Meadow Road residents with a lockdown concert.

He said: "I'll be singing all the wartime favourites including We'll Meet Again and Side by Side and then I'll be doing pure rock and roll classics like Billy Fury and Matt Monro.

"I'll be setting up on my drive and the neighbours can sit on the grass. I did it about a month ago and they came out and had a cider, beer or wine. We had a wonderful time.

"I haven't got any costumes but I have got some camouflage netting I might put up."

Barry Hale

Barry, 73, who has been self-isolating because he suffers from COPD and asthma, will be singing from midday and hopes to continue until 5pm raising money for forces charity Help For Heroes.

Across the UK including Corby and Wellingborough, the Royal British Legion has been encouraging people to hold socially distanced street parties.

Gareth Price, chairman of Corby Royal British Legion, said: "We will be doing our best to celebrate but the most important thing is to stay safe.

"The most important thing is to remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice, celebrate with each other but stay safe and socially distanced."

Families dragged out their furniture into Kipling Road, Kettering to enjoy a street party

Meanwhile in Raunds, the town council has asked people to decorate their homes red, white and blue and to have a VE Day Picnic at home.

Residents have been busy creating posters to mark the historic occasion that will be printed into banners to be used on August 15, the town's celebration to mark the 75th Anniversary of VJ Day.

Irthlingborough too has seen its town council-organised VE Day 75th anniversary celebration cancelled due to COVID-19 but people are being asked to join in a 'Stay at Home' street party with residents encouraged to decorate their houses in red, white and blue and enjoy a picnic in their front garden.

They are also hoping to hold a delayed town event later in the year depending on government guidelines.

Everyone can enjoy the VE Day bank holiday with a Stay At Home party

In Berrill Street, Irchester, neighbours will be coming out of their bunting-decked homes from 1pm on Friday (May 8) to share a socially-distanced picnic.

Resident Dawn Fraser said: "The majority of the residents are going to be decorating their homes and having a social distancing picnic.

"We even have a neighbour that will be playing music from 75 years ago."

Finally, in Kettering community VE Day celebrations, which were due to take place on the bank holiday weekend of May 8-10 will now take place online.

Kettering museum and gallery will host a virtual VE Day celebration with free activities, stories of wartime Kettering, ways to connect with the community and the chance to pay tribute to the generations of the Second World War.

The museum and art gallery staff will be posting stories and sharing objects virtually from their current ‘VE 75’ exhibition.

Children in Southgate Drive, Kettering celebrate VE Day

Join in the VE celebrations at on Twitter @KMuseumGallery, Facebook Kettering Museum and Art Gallery or on Instagram - @Kettering_Museum_Gallery or visit www.thisiskettering.com/vedayathome

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VE Day in Bath Road, Kettering