Hey guys! I have to say that one of the best things from 2020 so far is that it’s the 75th anniversary of VE day. I think it’s made people in the UK quite excited as it’s fun to decorate our houses and have little parties even if we are in lockdown right now. It’s pretty amazing to think that 75 years ago, we were fighting in one of the biggest wars of all time up until May 8 when victory in Europe came. Lots of the people I know didn’t even exist in 1945 but someone who did was my Great Nan. Now 102 years old and full of memories about the first VE day, my mum and I rang her to chat about it with her. She was full of information and very willing to share what she could remember of it and it was really interesting to hear about. So in today’s blog post, I will be sharing my Great Nan’s recollections of the first VE day.
‘It was wonderful’ were her first words. She recalled how everything had been blacked out during the war but on VE day, all the lights came back on and people spent all night dancing and celebrating in the streets. There were lots of different bands playing upbeat music and people stayed out all night. My Great Nan didn’t get home until 7:30 in the morning!
They never thought the war would last as long as it did. Those years were long and at times very difficult for many people. My Great Pop was an aircraft fighter in the war and he was in Germany on VE day. She was very relieved that he wouldn’t be killed now and that he’d be okay when he came home. He didn’t return home for another 3 months after the end of the war so he never celebrated VE day as some people in Germany were quite annoyed that the war had ended.
A memory she has of VE day is a Vera Lynn song called ‘A Nightingale sang in Berkeley Square’ being played. She associates it with that day and she hadn’t heard it in years. But one of the carers at the home Nan is in played it for her on her phone a couple of days ago, much to Nan’s delight and it was lovely for her to listen to it.
People’s houses were beautifully decorated for VE with fairy lights and flags. All the street lights were on after years of abandonment. People threw their windows open to project more light into the streets. I think it’s very symbolic in some ways as it represents the end of something dark and miserable and the beginning of a new and exciting era in the UK.
Thank you for reading this post! I think it’s a nice break from Coronavirus content and it reminded me that if they came out of the other side of the war all those years ago, we’ll come out of the other side of this pandemic. There’ll be another post out soon but until then bye for now!
Amelia Grace a.k.a Amelia in Hull