Victory in Europe Day
Celebrating its 75th anniversary this year, Victory in Europe Day (VE Day) is a perfect time to reflect on Britain’s rich history and how far we have come. The war had a detrimental impact on London, and the years after VE day were dedicated to rebuilding the capital city and getting back on our feet as a united and stronger nation.
Our History and WWII
The Battersea Power Station journey began in 1929 when works started on site and Sir Giles Gilbert Scott, one of the most prominent architects of the day (who was also responsible for Britain’s red telephone boxes), joined the project.
In 1935 the first stage of the Power Station, Battersea A, was completed, just four years before World War II began in 1939.
In 1940 the Battersea Power Station played a critical role for RAF pilots with the plumes of white vapour from the chimneys creating a guide for pilots to get them home in the mist. The Luftwaffe also used the plumes for navigation, which is a likely reason why Battersea Power Station avoided extensive bombing.
In 1944 Battersea B, the second stage of the Power Station, started to generate electricity. The station then went on to pioneer a gas washing process to reduce sulphur emissions, with excess generated heat ducted under the Thames. This then became a district heating scheme for 1,600 homes in Pimlico. In 1945, WWII ended and so today, we celebrate the 75th anniversary 8th May 2020.
That wasn’t it for the Battersea Power Station though, find out more about our history here.
On Friday 8 May 2020 the Battersea Power Station chimneys will be lit especially in the nation’s colours of red, white and blue to mark the celebration of VE Day’s 75th anniversary. Keep your eyes peeled if you live in the area and don’t forget to tag @BatterseaPwrStn in your social posts.
Battersea Power Station Community Choir
Battersea Power Station Community Choir launched in the summer of 2016 and has flourished with more than 100 local people regularly taking part in singing sessions. Lately of course the community choir has had to go virtual and have not missed a single practice. The Community Choir have put together a very special rendition of ‘We Will Meet Again’ by Vera Lynn especially for VE Day.
You can listen to their rendition below:
VE Day Boredom Busters
In honour of VE day we have found a range of activities to do at home to celebrate and join in with all the fun.
1. Colouring in and theming your home:
- 75 Years
- VE day
Courtesy of Colouring Heroes.
2. BBC VE Day Videos
BBC.co.uk have uploaded 10 videos helping educate young ones on what VE and VJ day is, both the history and geography of WWII and even code cracking too!
Find out more here.
3. The Queens Speech and Two Minute Silence
Her Majesty the Queen will address the nation on 8th May via a special television message to mark the occasion. Her speech on the significance of VE Day has been pre-recorded from Windsor Castle and will take place at 9pm, the same time that her father, King George VI, gave the radio address in 1945.
A two-minute silence across the nation will take place at 11am Friday 8th May which will be broadcast on the BBC. Find out more here.
4. Plan a VE Day Afternoon Tea Party
The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport has produced a template pack that the public can hold a 1940s style afternoon tea party at home. The pack comes complete with original recipes, games, and educational and creative activities for children.