Councils are encouraging anyone who wishes to commemorate the 75th anniversary of VE Day this weekend but to do so at home, and in line with social distancing guidelines.
Victory in Europe (VE) Day marks the day when fighting against Nazi Germany came to an end in 1945. The traditional early May bank holiday has been pushed back to 8th May this year to coincide with the historic anniversary.
Many planned activities to note the landmark moment have been cancelled in line with government social distancing measures. But alternative plans, including a range of special programmes by the BBC and events by the Royal British Legion, have been drawn up to offer a range of opportunities for anyone wishing to mark the poignant milestone.
Councillor Andrew Morgan (Rhondda Cynon Taf), WLGA Leader said:
“This weekend gives us a chance to pay our respects to those who sacrificed so much. But to honour the heroes of VE Day, we must protect the heroes of today by staying at home.
“There’s a range of opportunities on offer to us to mark the historic day whilst observing government public health guidelines. This is a chance for Wales to come together whilst staying apart.
“Although plans have changed, our desire to honour the sacrifices made during the Second World War and to commemorate the end of fighting in Europe remains.”
Councillor Matthew Dorrance (Powys), WLGA Spokesperson for Community Safety said:
“Our nation came together 75 years ago to mark the end of the War in Europe and to recognise the service by so many both overseas and on the home front. On this poignant anniversary, we can take a moment to pause and remember all the people from all walks of life who made the ultimate sacrifice.”
UK-wide remembrance activities include:
- At 11am commemorations will begin with a moment of remembrance, marked with a two minute silence.
- At 3pm, Sir Winston Churchill’s 1945 speech to the nation will be broadcast on the BBC as part of special programmes planned for the day.
- At 9pm, HM The Queen will address the nation on the BBC – at the exact moment her father, King George VI, gave a radio address in 1945.
- To be followed by a national singalong of Vera Lynn’s iconic wartime song, “We’ll Meet Again”.