VE Day celebrations at St Mary’s Church in Melton

VE Day - The 70th anniversary

VE Day - The 70th anniversary

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Special events are to be held at St Mary’s Church in Melton to mark the 70th anniversary of VE Day.

On Saturday (May 10), two soldiers based at the Defence Animal Centre (DAC) in Melton will bring their dogs along to show how they are trained.

The church will be decked out in bunting, flags and balloons and at 10.30am there will be children’s activities.

At 11am the church bells will be rung as they did in 1945 and the Mayor of Melton, Councillor John Wyatt will be attending, along with representatives from the Royal British Legion and the Royal Air Forces Association in the town.

There will also be a 1940s “sweet shop” where visitors will be given an old penny on arrival to buy a bag of sweets.

Other activities on the day include the chance to learn old-fashioned dances at 11.20am and 1pm, flag and hat making, a paper aeroplane competition, a party including jelly and ice cream and the chance to look at displays and memorabilia about VE Day.

Visitors are asked to come dressed in red, white and blue or a 1940s costume. All activities are free of charge.

Tomorrow (May 8), maroons will be fired before and after a two minute silence is observed at 3pm in Play Close.

There will also be a ceremony and a tribute at 9pm, followed by a beacon lighting at the church, at 9.32pm.

* A national two-minute silence will be held at The Cenotaph at 3pm on (May 8) marking the moment prime minister Winston Churchill broadcast his historic speech to formally announce the end of the war, before the lighting of more than 100 beacons, stretching from Newcastle to Cornwall.

There will also be a televised forties-style concert in London’s Horse Guards Parade.

* On Sunday (May 10), a service of thanksgiving will be held at Westminster Abbey, followed by a parade of Armed Forces personnel and veterans from the war. They will march past the balcony of the Treasury where Churchill made his famous appearance in front of the crowds on VE Day.

There will be a flypast of modern and Second World War aircraft and a display of period vehicles in St James’s Park.

To find out more about the celebrations visit www.gov.uk/government/topical-events/ve-day-70th-anniversary