Parish goes for Virtual VE75 so that residents can celebrate at home

Wickersley Parish Council wants local residents to continue to have the opportunity to mark the 75th Anniversary of VE Day and the end of the Second World War – but to do it from the safety of their own homes with the virtual support of the Parish.

Said Cllr Sue Ellis, Chair of the Wickersley Parish Council “While Covid -19 has prevented us from going ahead with our existing plans to mark this important anniversary we wanted residents to continue to have the opportunity to mark this important anniversary so we’ve rapidly revised our plans. We’ve set up a Facebook page which will have a series of activities each day building up to the big national celebrations on the 8th May. There are many similarities to the adversity people faced during the war to the situation in which we all find ourselves now. The Second World War saw acts of heroism and self-sacrifice, a huge outpouring of community spirit and social solidarity – which we are seeing repeated today.

We hope that our local residents can engage in preparing for this important anniversary – we have activities of interest to all ages groups and we hope this may provide a useful diversion for people from the unrelenting news about Covid-19”

Wickersley Parish Council has launched Facebook page @WickersleyParishCouncil. Even if people don’t ‘do’ Facebook it is possible to get involved by googling ‘Facebook Wickersley Parish Council’
The site will have lots of features from the 1940’s era to help prepare for the anniversary with different posts each day in the build up to 8th May;-
• Recipes – Ginger Beer, Carrot Scones, Cheese and Marmite swirls
• Hairstyles – with a ‘Step by Step’ guide to do your own ‘Victory Roll’;
• A 1940’s Make up Tutorial;
• A couple of Quizzes;
Demonstrations of dances of the era including the ‘Lindy Hop’ a swing dance of the 1920’s and 1930’s which gained popularity during the war
• An invitation to the ‘Children of Wickersley’ to download and colour in a Poppy to put in their windows and add to the ‘Wickersley Parish Poppy Trail’
• Recollections from Wickersley people about their experiences  VE Day

On Friday 8th May events include:

Two minutes silence at 11am

A Wickersley ‘Garden Promenade’ at 11.05am – we would have had a special VE Day Anniversary Walk as part of the Wickersley Walking Festival – inviting people to dress up in 1940’s gear and walk with us to the War Memorial and then on down to Winthrop Gardens for a VE Anniversary Party . But instead, the Parish is inviting people to dress up, get their ‘Victory Roll’ in place and ‘promenade’ in their own gardens, take a photo and share it to the Parish Facebook page.
The Parish will have a series of local messages throughout the day to mark the anniversary including:- Reverend Peter Hughes, Rector of St Albans ; Rt Hon John Healey, local MP and Shadow Secretary of State for Defence which includes responsibility for the Armed Forces and Cllr Sue Ellis, Chair of Wickersley Parish Council.
The Nation’s Toast at 3pm on Friday 8th May – everyone is invited to raise a glass of their preferred refreshment and join people across the UK in making the toast ‘To those who gave so much, we thank you’
English Heritage are inviting people to follow this with ‘Afternoon Tea’ in our front gardens!

Message from HM Queen at 9pm 
• The opportunity to Sing Along with the BBC at 9.05pm – on the Parish Facebook Page we’ve made this an ‘Event’ to remind people not to miss this and there is a Vera Lynn clip to get people word perfect for ‘We’ll meet again”!

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