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Thread: Victory in Europe

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    Default Victory in Europe

    On 7 May 1945 the formal act of military surrender was signed by Germany, ending the war in Europe. The next day celebrations broke out all over the world to mark Victory in Europe or VE Day. In Britain, Churchill marked the occasion by declaring 8 May a public holiday.

    Victory in Europe Day, generally known as VE Day (Great Britain) or V-E Day (North America), was celebrated on Tuesday, 8 May 1945 to mark the formal acceptance by the Allies of World War II of Nazi Germany's unconditional surrender of its armed forces.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NEav...4gBo90TrjfqySs
    "Our veterans did not forget about us .... Let's not forget about them." From Michael Levesque

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    Default Re: Victory in Europe

    I can clearly remember the V E day street party we had, I was 6 years old and we had been rehoused
    at Frien Barnet north London after being bombed. At the party they were all singing and dancing in the
    street, there was two effigy's hanging from a lamp post (Hitler and Mussolini ?) every child got a present,
    mine was a small black board and easel, it's amazing how many memories stay with you forever. John Collier

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    Default Re: Victory in Europe

    Extracted from my book, LIFE ABOARD A WARTIME LIBERTY SHIP.

    We were two days out from Bombay on 8 May, 1945, proclaimed Victory in Europe (VE) Day. There was no great rejoicing on the ship and I believe that everyone, like myself, was just relieved that that conflict was at an end. During my night watch, I listened to the Overseas Service of the BBC which gave commentaries on the celebrations in various cities throughout the world. The commentator located in London's Trafalgar Square described the wild scene there, where the crowd was so dense that individuals were carried along with it. But I felt no jubilation and only a great sadness for those who had lost loved ones or whose lives had been destroyed in the protracted and senseless conflict. Most certainly, Nazi Germany had to be defeated, but, had Britain and France stopped Hitler from rearming Germany, in contravention of the Treaty of Versailles, when he came to power in 1933, there would have been no Second World War.

    As the Samforth was in the Japanese Theatre of War, we still sailed 'blacked-out'. (We were bound for Lourenšo Marques.)

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    Default Re: Victory in Europe

    Lest we forget
    Last edited by Ken Norton; 8th May 2019 at 01:21 PM.
    R 800658 Kn

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    Default Re: Victory in Europe

    We hadd a bonfire with all the benches and flea ridden bedding from the air raid shelters that I had slept most nights through the war and then the liquid parafin and fine tooth comb treatment next moring before going to school where the first 30 minutes was rest your head on the desk and try to sleep. Rgds Den

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    Default Re: Victory in Europe

    Yes how true Den, The fine tooth comb The more frustrated my old Mam got every time one dropped on the echo. The thing is they are making a come back I was told by a school teacher the other day, And as you say with us it was the bombed out houses we played in ETC.... Does this mean todays kids are getting neglected in some way you can get a block of soap and other stuff through your doctor free on prescription
    {terry scouse}

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    Default Re: Victory in Europe

    Quote Originally Posted by osheadenis View Post
    We hadd a bonfire with all the benches and flea ridden bedding from the air raid shelters that I had slept most nights through the war and then the liquid parafin and fine tooth comb treatment next moring before going to school where the first 30 minutes was rest your head on the desk and try to sleep. Rgds Den
    We had a Anderson shelter in the garden but it always had water in it , when our house copped it there was
    no warning other than the silence when the motor cut out and moments after that the explosion followed, that's how the Doodlebug worked leaving no time to get to the shelter.my uncle had a Morrison shelter in his front room, much more comfortable but a deathtrap if a gas pipe got fractured and ignited. The thing I remember is how much more sociable people were, kids called adults Mr /Mrs and their name, everybody knew each others name, neighbours would have a chinwag over the garden fence or on the street corner, you don't see that today , everybody seems to be in a hurry. Cheers

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    Default Re: Victory in Europe

    They were tough times but times where every one helped every one else.
    You had spare food you offered some to those without.
    A strong sense of community was the order of the day, every one was in the same predicament.

    Sadly today most of that community spirit is gone, conditions and events such as those of 9/11 have made people wary of strangers now.
    The younger generation rely now on social media for ant sense of community so real community suffers.

    The world needs to get back to some of the basics if we are to survive.
    Happy daze John in Oz.

    Life is too short to blend in.

    John Strange R737787
    World Traveller

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    Default Re: Victory in Europe

    At noon on 8th May The Admiralty directed the German High Command to give surrender orders to all U-boats at sea. They were to surface;hoist BLACK flags and make their way to certain ports and positions. 33 subs surrendered in Loch Eriboll in the far north of Scotland. They were boarded by Allied Naval Personnel.

    8 Subs were escorted to Loch Alsh where the crews and Officers were taken away. A skeleton crew remained under armed guard.

    Sir Max Horton ordered my Dad (Capt. Bill Hartley) to voyage to Loch Alsh and then to Lisahally in N. Ireland to represent the Rescue Ship Service.

    11 Allied Warships left Loch Alsh on 13th May. These ships represented the major elements from the Naval Alliances in the Battle of the Atlantic; namely Britain, Canada and the U.S.A.

    Unfortunately, for the crew of R.S.GOODWIN they were not able to maintain the speed of the Naval Escorts, particularly as they were in their usual place at the rear of the Convoy. Not wanting to disappoint his crew, Bill took GOODWIN at night through the narrow passage of Kylerea taking depth soundings as he went. He brought GOODWIN through the Sound of Sleet and then southwards to Loch Foyle and Lisahally in good time.

    Sir Max Horton formally took the surrender of this token force at 2.pm on 14th May.

    Great sense of justice !
    Regards
    Brenda

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    Default Re: Victory in Europe

    Cargo ship Avondale Park, 2,878grt, (MOWT, Witherington & Everett) On the evening of 7th May 1945, the unconditional surrender by Germany to the Western Allies was signed at Rheims. The same day the coastal Convoy EN-491 was making her way northward past the Firth of Forth, one mile East of May Island. As the country was celebrating well into the night the final peace in Europe, at around 22.45 hours, two massive explosions rolled in from across the sea into the Firth of Forth. The Ladies at the Methil Seaman's Mission knew the sound only too well and hurriedly prepared blankets and hot soup for any possible survivors. U-2336 had found its mark on two Merchant ships, the British Avondale Park killing two crewmembers and the Norwegian Sneland I, which sank within two minutes in position 56’ 09N 02’ 30W with the loss of seven crewmembers including a young British Merchant Seaman age sixteen. The survivors from both ships were rescued by the convoy escort naval trawlers HMS Valse and HMS Leicester City and eventually landed at Methil. The sinking’s happened three days after Admiral Karl D÷nitz had given the U-boats the order to stop all enemy action and return to port. The U-boats had finished their war as they had started it nearly six years before, with an unprovoked attack on the men of the "Forgotten Fourth Service"

    The last three British Merchant Seamen killed that day were Chief Engineer George Anderson (pictured) from Co. Durham. He had served at sea throughout the war, having served in Atlantic convoys, Operation Torch in the North African Campaign and the dreaded Russian convoys. He left behind a wife and two daughters. Donkeyman William Harvey from South Shields had also served at sea throughout the war and left behind a wife. Mrs Sarah Jane Harvey had been putting the final touches to the celebration bunting in the street where they lived when she was informed of his death. Both men had been on duty in the engine-room of the Avondale Park and were believed to have died instantly. Mess-room Boy William Henry Ellis from Hull, serving on the Norwegian Sneland was just five days short of his 17th Birthday when killed.

    It was now time to rebuild Europe and the British Merchant Navy was at the forefront. The country still needed raw materials to rebuild a war ravaged country and feed its people as well bring home the fighting men from all four corners of the world. This was the job of the Merchant Seaman, civilian volunteers to a man. The danger of the U-boats, commerce raiders, bombers, E-boats & battle ships may have been removed, but there still lay the danger of the sea and even more deadly the four million mines which had been laid around Britain’s coastal area and the millions more in all the world’s oceans. Lloyd’s records of Merchant & Fishing Vessels lost as a result of mines or underwater explosions since the cessation of hostilities with Germany and Japan were still being recorded up to September 1957, twelve years after the war finished and recorded nearly six hundred vessels lost, many of them fishing boats that accidentally brought in mines caught in their nets.
    Avondale-Park-VE-Day.jpg
    "Across the seas where the great waves grow, there are no fields for the poppies to grow, but its a place where Seamen sleep, died for their country, for you and for peace" (Billy McGee 2011)

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