VE Day 2020

75 years on, take time to remember the day the clouds lifted across Europe

In 2013, NPT Council and a number of partners signed our Armed Forces Covenant with the aim of supporting the armed forces community in the Neath Port Talbot area.

All other local authorities in Wales signed up to the Covenant and each authority has an Armed Forces Champion, which is a role undertaken by an elected member. The purpose of the Champion is to promote and champion the interests and needs of the armed forces community locally and act as single point of contact.

Neath Port Talbot’s Armed Forces Champion is Councillor Chris James. Councillor James joined the Royal Navy in 1990. While working in Naval Operations he served in both the Sierra Leone and Afghanistan conflicts before leaving in 2005 after being injured in service.

On behalf of Neath Port Talbot Council, Councillor Chris James has recorded this message for VE Day 75…

The Last Post

We are humbled to be able to share with you Mr Barry Woodley’s recording of the Last Post and Lowering of the Standard Ceremony filmed from his own home.

Barry Woodley is an active member of the Port Talbot Branch of The Royal British Legion, where he is honoured to be their Standard Bearer.  Barry is also the Standard Bearer for the South Wales and South West Branch of the Type 42 Destroyer Association, which represents 6 of the 7 frontline ships he served on in his 27 years in the Royal Navy, having joined at 16, where he achieved the rank of Chief Petty Officer.

 

VE Day 75 – key events

The Royal British Legion has called for a two-minute silence to be held to honour the service and sacrifice of the wartime generation and reflect on the devastating impact Covid-19 has had on so many lives across the world.

There’s no right or wrong way to take part in the Silence, some may wish to stand at their windows, open their front doors, watch the TV coverage, or simply sit in a quiet moment of reflection.


Barry Woodley, Standard Bearer of the Port Talbot Branch of The Royal British Legion has kindly recorded the Last Post and Lowering of the Standard Ceremony from his own home. The ceremony also includes a two-minute silence. This is also a most fitting way to mark this moment.

The nation is invited to join in with the VE Day 75 Livestream on the Royal British Legion’s Facebook page. Tune in as the generations of the Second World War and today are brought together to chat about their shared experiences.

‘Mess Up The Mess Theatre Company’ – live performance for VE Day – Part 1.  With their classes at Pontardawe Arts Centre on hold, join them online from their own homes.

The Nation’s Toast to the Heroes of World War Two - take part by raising a glass, cheering and clapping on your doorstep and saying: “To those who gave so much, we thank you.”

‘Mess Up The Mess Theatre Company’ – live performance for VE Day – Part 2.  They stage regular performances at Pontardawe Arts Centre – today you can join them online from   their own homes.

 

Live streaming of a special VE Day ‘Dance Along’ with Peri Lynn at 5pm

Join Neath’s very own star Mezzo Soprano Katherine Jenkins OBE for a historic mini-concert from an empty Royal Albert Hall in London. Streaming on the Royal Albert Hall website and YouTube in support of SSAFA (The Armed Forces Charity.)

Another Neath singer and rising star goes live from her own home! Kirsten Orsborn, Royal Marines Sweetheart will perform wartime favourites to her many local followers and fans across the globe.

BBC 1 will be showing a pre-recorded address by the Queen at the exact moment her father, King George VI, gave his radio address on May 8 1945.


Fancy a sing-along? Just after the Queen’s address, the nation is invited to come together in a rendition of Vera Lynn’s We’ll Meet Again on BBC 1.

Neath Port Talbot Music Service go back to the Forties!

The talented Neath Port Talbot Music Service team are doing their bit to mark VE Day via YouTube.  Funded by Neath Port Talbot Council, Cerdd NPT Music Service tutors pupils across all schools on a wide range of instruments.  Throughout lockdown the they’ve been keeping in touch with students and running online tutorials.

Firstly, check out this brilliant rendition of ‘We’ll Meet Again’ performed by music teacher Lisa Rumble.  It’s perfect to watch during the national ‘singalong’ just after 9pm on VE Day 75!

 

Click here to see NPT music teacher Kirstie Roberts done up ‘all 40s style’ singing an Andrews Sisters’ classic!