Bumper year for ‘unique’ canal side event

Stoke Bruerne Village at War weekend.Northamptonshire Home Guard re-enactors.'120930M-C584
Stoke Bruerne Village at War weekend.Northamptonshire Home Guard re-enactors.'120930M-C584
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Organisers of the fifth Stoke Bruerne Village at War weekend are predicting a record breaking year as thousands once again flock to the canal-side extravaganza.

Last year between five and six thousand people attended the 1940s themed event, helping to raise £12,000 for the Stoke Bruerne Canal Museum.

Stoke Bruerne Village at War weekend.40s re-enactors.'120930M-C612

Stoke Bruerne Village at War weekend.40s re-enactors.'120930M-C612

David Blagrove, chairman for the Friends of Stoke Bruerne Canal Museum said: “It was a bumper year as far as we are concerned. The weather helped of course, and on the Saturday we had the fly past by two Spitfires which helped attract the crowd.

“But we must have broken all records for crowds on the Saturday.

“We haven’t got exact numbers yet, but we know one of the car parks was full by 11 o’clock Saturday morning, which hasn’t happened in the past. “

As well as the flypast Mr Blagrove said the crowds were thrilled with several stirring speeches from Winston Churchill, and General Montgomery as he prepared for the Battle of El Alamein.

Stoke Bruerne Village at War weekend.Crowds.'120930M-C609

Stoke Bruerne Village at War weekend.Crowds.'120930M-C609

The Pitsford Home Guard were also stationed at prominent positions through out the village, and there were displays of military vehicles alongside a large trade show, with stalls on and off the canal.

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Mr Blagrove added: “As far as I’m aware the event is uniquely positioned, we don’t know of any other canal community in the country where such an event takes place.”

Mr Blagrove said although the event is organised by the Friends there are countless village residents and volunteers who help make the weekend a success.

He added: “It’s also thanks to the tremendous amount of hard work put in by Mick Butler and members of his organising sub-committee.”

Proceeds from the weekend go towards improving displays, and widening the appeal and accessibility of the museum which is owned by the Canal and River (charitable) Trust, formerly known as British Waterways.