Uckfield businesses have thrown themselves into celebrating the 75th anniversary of VE Day, the official end of World War 2 in Europe.
Look out, for example, for a spectacular display of red, white and blue balloons in the window of Josefina in Uckfield High Street.
Fuller and Scott funeral directors, in Civic Approach, have completed a window of VE Day memories with images of people in their service uniforms, their stories, and photographs of them today.
Spiderman came to the shop yesterday to attract attention to the display.
Rowland Gorringe estate agents have dedicated their High Street window to heroes of today battling Coronavirus, and heroes of those 75 years ago who fought for Victory in Europe.
Uckfield News looks back at the mixed emotions there would have been in Uckfield on May 9, 1945, when the end of the war in Europe was celebrated while many still grieved the loss of loved ones.
See our feature: Uckfield did not escape Hitler’s attention in World War 2.
Today’s 75th anniversary events
VE Day 75th anniversary events today include:
11am A two-minute silence of Remembrance and thanksgiving
11.15am A VE Day 75 year livestream on the Royal British Legion Facebook page
2.45pm A recording of Winston Churchill’s victory speech from May 8, 1945, will be played on a BBC One programme which will also include personal testimony read by well-known public figures who recall VE Day celebrations.
2.55pm Ray Martin will play Last Post and Reveille at the Holy Cross Church wall memorial to mark the anniversary of the ending of hostilities in Europe. Afterwards he will play Somewhere Over the Rainbow in memory of all those people in the NHS who have lost their lives during the Coronavirus pandemic. The Royal British Legion standard will be there too.
3pm Toast to heroes of World War 2.People are encouraged to go on to their doors steps, raise a glass, and cheer and clap saying “To those who gave so much, we thank you.”
6.55pm Cry for Peace in Uckfield. Town crier Ian Bedwell will be seen on social media ‘Crying for Peace around the World’, just as town criers across the UK would have done 75 years ago.
8pm VE Day 75: The People’s Celebration. BBC One hosts a musical celebration to replace live events and street parties planned to mark the day. There will be songs from the 30s and 40s including Bluebirds Over the White Cliffs of Dover, and When the Lights Go On Again.
9pm Address by the Queen. A pre-recorded speech will be broadcast at the exact time the Queen’s father, King George VI gave his address on May 8, 1945.
There will be some ‘socially distanced’ parties too such as in Gordon Road, Buxted, where music will play from 5pm until about 9.30pm.