Burnham-On-Sea, Somerset

September 18, 2005
Huge VE/VJ Day celebration attracts crowds to Burnham-On-Sea

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Berrow war veteran Richard Flockston watches a Chipmunk aircraft fly by during Sunday's VE/VJ Day anniversary in Burnham-On-Sea

Berrow war veteran Richard Flockston, pictured above, was among the large crowds of people who descended on Burnham-On-Sea on Sunday September 18th for a special event marking the 60th anniversaries of VE/VJ-Day and the 65th anniversary of the Battle Of Britain.

A fly-past by a World War II Chipmunk aircraft was among the highlights of the event at the BASC Sports Ground, which organisers heralded as a "brilliant day."

Mike Wool of Wrington Royal British Legion was among those on parade at the special VE/VJ Day anniversaryThe event included a parade of military standards, several bands, numerous displays and demonstrations, plus a jump by The Red Devils Freefall Parachute Display Team, who 'dropped in' during the afternoon.

The weather stayed dry throughout the afternoon, much to the relief of organisers and the scores of stallholders and groups who lined the main parade ground.

Organiser Malcolm Hill of the Royal British Legion told Burnham-On-Sea.com: "So many people have come up to me and said what a fantastic event it has been. It really has been a brilliant day."

Bobby Hanscomb, President of Somerset's Royal British Legion, added: "Full marks to Burnham for putting on such a big event as this - it's been excellent."

"You need to have fun on some occasions like this. I'm a firm believer in remembrance being more than just weeping by the grave."

Several Mayors and VIPs from across Somerset were in attendence, alongside Burnham-On-Sea MP David Heathcoat-Amory.

With smoke trailing behind, Red Devils members Steve Candlish and Jeff Bull unfurl the Union Jack during their approach to Burnham's VE/VJ anniversary eventDuring a ceremony at the start of the afternoon, The Last Post was played and this was followed by two minutes silence.

The Royal Marine Band from Devon performed the British Legion March and Beating the Retreat later in the afternoon and they were followed by the Standard Bearers.

Several stalls and static displays were set up at the BASC Ground to show WW2 memorabilia and collectables, plus vintage and classic cars.

There was also entertainment from Bath Spa Band, a majorettes group and the Avon Glenn Pipes and Drum group.

Burnham-On-Sea Mayor Eric Gill with MP David Heathcoat-Amory and Jake Barritt, the Mayor's Cadet Demonstrations were held by the Burnham Monarchs gymnastics group, Stardust Majorettes, Avon and Somerset Fire Rescue, the police and a special display was put on by Burnham's rescue hovercraft.

The Spirit Of Lelaina hovercraft was joined by a second, smaller hovercraft that is currently on trial and a rescue exercise was performed on the grass by the volunteers of BARB.

The Royal Marine Association of Bridgwater stewarded the event alongside Burnham Scouts and Burnham Lions.

Among the other groups in attendance were The Veterans War Agency, RAF, Coldstream Guards, The National Austistic Society, St John Ambulance, Burnham Sea Cadets, St Andrew's Church, Moose International, Burnham Rotary Club and the Womens Guild.

Click here for more photos from the event...


Click here for more photos from this event

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