Here are a few pictures of the 50th anniversary of VE Day in Abingdon.
My diary says … “May 8th 1995 – As Bank Holidays go this was a good one. In the Market Square we joined the crowds to catch buns thrown, from the museum roof, by the Mayor and other Town Council Dignitaries . From where I was, the sun in my eyes, I saw buns like black disks shooting off in all trajectories, often coming in bursts. One landed on my head and got trodden on. Another came with a plop into my hands. It had a V for Victory on top. The ladies next to me got a VE bun. They said they varnish the buns and keep them. While we were talking another bun hit me on the head and bounced off behind. Somebody behind shouted ‘Well Caught!’ Alex (our son) got very competitive and got into a tug of war for one bun. We did not see any of the prize M or AM buns from the Morlands Brewery…”
Before the bun throw we watched bands on the Market Place’
There were national flags of the twin towns.
The town council walked back afterwards.
The Mayor could be Dr Colin Kemp, and behind him is Dr Jim Halliday, the Deputy Mayor.
There was also an event at the Kingfisher Barn called ‘50 Years Ago Britain said farewell to arms’.
In the evening my diary says “We went to watch the bonfire in Rye Farm Meadow from across the River. The huge tongues of flame, reflected in the Thames, made the river look on fire. We then went home and watched a very good Dad’s Army – the one where Corporal Jones got married; and watched national beacons being lit round the country and the Queen and Vera Lynn. Jessica (our daughter) asked amazed ‘Is that our Queen?’ The Queen wore a blue outfit and a spangly broach.’
VE Day 75 in Abingdon will be quite different as we are in lockdown to stop the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic. Abingdon-on-Thames have a page on VE Day 75 Abingdon virtual celebrations.
My mum who is staying inside during the lockdown remembers VE Day with a little sadness. She belonged to the Exclusive Brethren, and that meant she was not allowed to mix socially with others not in the group. She remembers watching all her neighbours celebrating in a field and not being allowed to join in.