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VE Day 75 and World War Two

Armed Forces Covenant Gold AwardFriday 8 May 2020 marks the 75th anniversary of VE Day (Victory in Europe Day). After six years of the Second World War, Winston Churchill made a national radio broadcast announcing Germany’s surrender at 3pm, marking the end of the war in Europe.

The current coronavirus emergency and consequent government guidance means that we are sadly unable to continue with our planned events to mark this 75th anniversary. However we would like you to join us (from your homes) as we pay tribute to the servicemen and women who served in the war and celebrate this historic anniversary, just as they did in 1945.

At 11am we are encouraging people across all communities to take part in a national moment of remembrance and pause at home for two minutes to honour the service and sacrifice of the Second World War generation and reflect on the impact the Covid-19 epidemic.

On behalf of the residents of Trafford the Leader of Trafford Council, Councillor Andrew Western, and a Council representative will lay a wreath in the memorial area of the sunken gardens in the grounds of Trafford Town Hall immediately following the two minute silence at 11am.

The Royal British Legion (RBL) is playing a central role in the delivery of a range of remote activity, including a National moments of remembrance and thanksgiving - including a two minute silence - and an evening of memories and music in partnership with the BBC from 8pm on BBC One. You can find out more by visiting the RBL website.

Remember to please follow Government rules on social distancing:

IWM Voices of war

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Take a moment on Friday 8 May to listen to the Imperial War Museums' four-minute soundscape, telling the personal stories of people who stood together during a time of national crisis and their reflections once the fighting had stopped. You will be able to listen to the soundscape on the IWM website

VE Day learning pack

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Understanding our shared heritage of Remembrance helps bring communities together, and ensures that we recognise the service and sacrifice of past and present generations. With this in mind The Royal British Legion have put together Learning Resources that you can download from their website.

Trafford Archives

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Trafford Archives are marking the 75th anniversary of VE Day with a fascinating online exhibition 'All in it together' about the Second World War in the Trafford area. Check out their website to view the exhibition. And keep an eye on the Trafford Archives Twitter feed for all the latest updates.

Evening of memories and music

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At 8pm on Friday 8 May The BBC, in partnership with the Royal British Legion, will be presenting The People’s Celebration - an evening of memories and music to honour and celebrate the Second World War generation. 

Share your stories

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We'd love to see your photos and stories about your families' connections with WW2. Share your story with us on facebook or twitter.

We'd also love to see how you celebrated. Post any photos you take using #VE75, @traffordcouncil, @traffordpartnership

VE Day at home

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Even without being able to get out and about, there are still lots of ways to get involved! Check out the VE Day 75 website for ideas including tips for hosting a tea party at home, colouring and making bunting.

Veterans' stories on Twitter

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Twitter will be featuring moving video stories from veterans over the next couple of weeks. Check out the first one - Mervyn's #VEDay75 story - here.

Hero video

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On the 8 May @DCMS on Twitter will be posting a hero video featuring people thanking those who contributed to the War effort at home, including teachers, farmers, engineers,etc. Please look out for this and share. 

Message from HM the Queen

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Her Majesty The Queen will send a message to the nation on Friday 8 may at 9pm on BBC One, the exact moment her father, King George VI, gave a radio address in 1945.

The Nation's Toast to the Heroes

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Raise a glass to the Heroes at 3pm on Friday 8 May. Take this opportunity to pay tribute to the many millions at home and abroad that gave so much to ensure we all enjoy and share the freedom we have today, by giving the toast: “To those who gave so much, we thank you.” 

Dan Snow's VE Day creative challenge

Historian and presenter Dan Snow has set a creative challenge for school-aged children to research what VE Day is all about. Enter now on the official VE Day 75 website.

UK-wide sing-a-long

Join the Royal British Legion at 9pm on Friday 8 May for a UK-wide rendition of Dame Vera Lynn’s ‘We’ll Meet Again’. You can watch and join in on BBC1, and if you don't know the words you can view them on the RBL website page here.

Creative writing workshops

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Trafford Libraries will be running a series of free online VE75 themed creative writing workshops for beginners. Funded by Arts Council England, these courses begin week commencing 25 May and spaces are limited. Contact libraries@trafford.gov.uk

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