V.E. Day 8 May 1945
|Victory in Europe Day
There was a party and bonfire in the field between Brierley Hall and Cross Lane to celebrate V.E. Day. Click for the Names
In Suffolk Avenue they built a bonfire in the middle of the road - it was not made up in those days and mainly a grass track.
From the School log book
7 May 1945 It was announced by the B.B.C. news during the afternoon that Germany had surrendered unconditionally. A short thanksgiving service was held in the school.
8 May 1945 V.E. Day. School was closed in accordance with instructions already received. [The 8th was a Tuesday and so the school was closed for 3 days].
11 May 1945 School reopened at 9am. Attendance was low. 50 cases of measles.
30 May 1945 Film Visit - films shown India - Darjeeling, Great Tit, V.E. Day in London.
10 September 1945 School reopened after the Summer Holiday during which the war against Japan came to an end.
27 September 1945 School closed for today - local celebration of V.E. Day.
Peldon Neighbourhood News in Essex County Standard tells us how Peldon celebrated:
V.E. DAY - A large congregation assembled at the Parish Church on V.E. Day when a service of thanksgiving was held and on the following evening victory was celebrated in the Village Hall, where all joined heartily in community singing, also in games organised by Mrs Wilson, and ably directed by Mr and Mrs Harris and Mrs Patmore. Outdoor illuminations arranged by Mr and Mrs Short added a note of gaiety. On Sunday there was a church parade of members of the Home Guard, Civil Defence, NFS and ATC Lessons were read by Lieut. I Pullen, OC Home Guard, and an appropriate address was given by the rector, Rev J.R. Wilson B.A.
More Memories of V.E. Day
Mary was teaching in London towards the end of the War, and was then evacuated to Bude in Devon.
Joy Gethen had lived on the island since 1906. For the duration of WW2, she went to work in the Council Offices, and in 1995 recorded some of her memories.
Kath Haines recalls the family going to London from Nottinghamshire for the celebrations.
Susan was working at the Naval Attache's office in the British Embassy in Paris. "In the afternoon of 7th May, a Captain came into the office tell us that peace had been signed. That evening we went to the pictures to see "You were never lovelier" and when we came out we found the Arc de Triumphe was floodlit, the first time I had ever seen it. Crowds had gathered in the Place de la Concorde and the Americans were going wild in their jeeps. On V.E. Day itself I went to the office as usual, but was given the afternoon and the following day off, unusual in itself. We seemed to spend all the afternoon in the Champs Elysees, kissing all and sundry and dancing down the road, whilst most of Paris seemed to have assembled there and planes flew overhead dropping fairy lights. The night ended with champagne all round. It seemed a natural conclusion at the time, but I guess the drink had been hidden away from the Germans during the occupation.
With thanks to
Mersea Island Society
Mersea Island Lions Talking Magazine
West Mersea School
Peace celebration street party after WW2, in Station Road, Tollesbury.
The car on the left is AEV271.
V.E. Day Party near the Council Houses in Dawes Lane. The party was in the field to the east of Brierley Hall, where Mary Smith (Crisp) was born. Mary says she was 2 at the time but was crying so was not in the picture. There was a big bonfire in the field which went on for days. The party was organised by Vic Quigley, photograph taken by Jane.
1. Back Row 1. Shirley Lee (Greenleaf), 2. Peter Watsham, 3. Ray Coppin, 4. Tony Watsham, 5. Colin Benns, 6. Hughie Farthing, 7. John Benns
2. 1. Gordon Russell, 2. John Parkin, 3. John Watsham
3. 1. Joyce Roberts (Johnson}, 2. Jenny Mole (Peck), 3. Anne Green (Mole), 4. Margaret Sheldrick (Lothian), 5. Sheila Lane (Saunders), 6. Marina Watsham
4. 1. David Baveystock, 2. Celia Penton, 3. Brenda Lane, 4. Anne Lord ?, 5. Roger Sheldrick 6. Jane Quigley (Webb), 7. Doris King (Rampling)
5. 1., 2. Shirley Parkin, 3. Sylvia Lane ?, 4. Pat Green ?, 5. Anne Watsham ? 6. Wendy Green (Grainger), 7. Christine Russell (Cant), 8. David Lord
6. Front Row 1. Barbara Russell (Oppezzo), 2., 3., 4. Peter ? Bibby, 5. Norma Hoy ?, 6. Terry Watsham ?, 7. Brian Hart, 8. Joy Quigley (Parnell)
With thanks to Real Mersea Locals on Facebook 5 May 2020, where Chloe Mole posted a similar photograph of the party. The photograph has a title on a blackboard - Victory Day Street Party. There is no agreement yet on the date for this !
Tollesbury Peace Celebrations. Programme.
8 June 1946
Source: Mersea Museum