War era bought to life by friends of canal museum

Despite its best ever line-up of attractions the Stoke Bruerne Village at War event was marred by bad weather last weekend.

Every year the Friends of Stoke Bruerne Canal Museum fill the village with 1940s themed attractions including military vehicles and re-enactors for the two-day event.

Stoke Bruerne Village at War. Machine gun demonstration.'130915M-C349

Stoke Bruerne Village at War. Machine gun demonstration.'130915M-C349

This year, the event was opened by King George VI, whose speech came with authentic hesitation, and a stirring speech by Winston Churchill revived the Blitz spirit ahead of the downpours on Sunday.

Sadly the Spitfire flypast schedule for Sunday had to be cancelled and fundraising for the museum is expect to be a quarter of the £22,000 the event raised last year.

But David Blagrove, chairman of the friends said it was an atmospheric event which was supported by the whole community.

He said: “The atmosphere in the village was really great.

Stoke Bruerne Village at War. Singer Lola Lamour.'130915M-C345

Stoke Bruerne Village at War. Singer Lola Lamour.'130915M-C345

“One innovation this year was a church parade. Usually it’s in a marquee, but this year a piper lead the RBL representatives and standard bearers, followed by the Home Guard and other re-enactors.

“Village residents also decorated their houses with blast tape in their windows, and one resident had recordings of Churchill’s speeches playing through their window.”

Attractions included a Blitz experience bunker with sound effects, a dance floor was constructed in the music area, and ladies were able to learn health and beauty tips from the 1940s.

For more about the Friends of Stoke Bruerne Canal Museum visit www.friendsofcanalmuseum.org.uk.