Plenty of celebrations and events have been cancelled due to Coronavirus, with many of our collective plans for the summer currently on hold. Whilst street parties and gatherings to celebrate the 75th Anniversary of (Victory in Europe) VE Day have by necessity been stopped, we’ve pulled together some ideas so that you can commemorate and celebrate the occasion from the safety of your own homes.
Whether you’re planning on cooking up a wartime feast or having a ‘Stay Home’ picnic in your front garden with your neighbours (socially distancing of course!), we’ve got plenty you can do to mark the occassion.
Decorating your windows all manner of red, white and blue
We’ll be providing templates to make your own bunting or Union Flags on 5 May for you to print, paint or colour in, so check back here next week. And if you’re quick and have Amazon Prime, you may be able to get your hands on some red, white and blue themed items like balloons or crepe paper. But here’s a list of other arts and craft ideas to get you started:
- Paint some red, white and blue rainbows.
- Finger paint abstract artwork – what child doesn’t love a bit of handprint or finger painting? Get your red and blue paints out and let their creativity flow.
- Toilet roll cardboard crafts – there’s all sorts of things you can do with a toilet roll inner when it comes to arts and crafts – from decorating them as camouflage soldiers to creating red and blue firework paintings.
- Stick a ‘Tommy in the window’ – The Royal British Legion Industries (RBLI) have Tommy figures available to purchase or a ‘Tommy in the Window’ sticker, with proceeds going toward helping Veterans and their families.
War time picnic from your front garden
Whether you’re planning on getting your whole street involved or just the family, why not whip up a feast with some of these war time favourites. Simply click on the links to get the recipe:
Don’t forget sandwiches – a VE day staple! Whilst we’re not expecting anyone to be reaching for the dripping, but if you recently grabbed yourselves a tin of spam to stock up for lockdown, and still wondering what to do with it, stick it in a sandwich! A perfect VE day tribute.
Great British Family War Time Baking Competition (because we couldn’t copy the well-known TV show here!)
Why not add an extra layer of fun this VE day by having a cooking or baking competition with your friends or family? Whether you’re in the same house, or video calling each other to share the experience and results, why not battle it out for the glory of the ‘baking star’.
Family war time pub quiz
Why not get everyone on a video call for a family pub quiz focussed on VE Day? We found these free online pub quiz questions.
- Paul’s Quiz – WWII pub quiz
- Free Pub Quiz – WWII quizzes page
- CBBC – Newsround quiz (ideal for the younger family members)
Netflix WWII movie must-sees
Netflix are showing a number of war time films or shows. Ideal for anyone that’s wanting to fill in the WWII knowledge gaps or just looking for something to reflect on the horrors and heroics of the time, these are currently available to view:
- World War II in colour
- The Pianist
- Darkest Hour
Sadly, there’s no airing of The Great Escape due on TV for the next couple of weeks, but the BBC will be hosting a number of television shows throughout the day, including; The One Show VE Day hour long special, The Antiques Roadshow VE Day Special, and at 8pm on BBC, Sophie Raworth will host a unique musical celebration in conjunction with the Royal British Legion, featuring Katherine Jenkins, Beverley Knight, Shane Richie and Anton Du Beke.
Over on ITV, they will be showing a documentary on British Army Veteran Tom Moore who recently raised millions for the NHS, and his role in WWII, followed by Dad’s Army.
And don’t forget to tune in for the Queen’s speech at 9pm on Friday 8 May!
Share your family photos with us
If you’ve got photos of family members during the war, we’d love to see them. If you’ve got pictures showing what your relatives looked like then and now, then please share them to our Facebook or Twitter accounts as we’d love to celebrate them all, whatever role they played in the war.