The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge marked VEDay


Duke and Duchess of Cambridge talked to WWII Vaterans
Kensington Palace/ Screenshot

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge joined veterans for a very special VEDay75 party at the Royal British Legion’s Mais House Care Home. On the 75th anniversary of VE (Victory in Europe) Day, the Europe is paying tribute to the service of the entire WW2 generation — from British, Commonwealth and Allied Forces to evacuees and those who served on the home front.

The royal Couple made the call to the residents of an East Sussex care home and listened to the Wartime stories and the day the war ended in Europe on May 8, 1945 on Wednesday morning. When the couple called, champagne was flowing around to celebrate the historical event.

Duchess of Cambridge talked about Prince George and Princess Charlotte learning wartime anthem
BBC Screenshot/ The Royal Family

Victory in Europe Day, generally known as VE Day, is a day celebrating the formal acceptance by the Allies of World War II of Nazi Germany’s unconditional surrender of its armed forces on Tuesday, 8 May 1945, marking the end of World War II in Europe. Duke of Cambridge thanked all the veterans and said, “Because we can’t be together, everyone’s still thinking of you all today, and are very proud of everything you’ve all achieved“.

Duke and Duchess of Cambridge heard the stories of WWII during video call to the veterans
BBC Screenshot/The Royal Family

The couple talked to Charles Ward and Jean Hull, who told them the story of Britain’s then Prime Minister Winston Churchill’s secret birthday message to his son. Duchess also revealed that Prince George and Princess Charlotte are learning Dame Vera Lynn’s famous wartime anthem. She said, “The school has set all the children a challenge and they’re currently trying to learn the lyrics to the song We’ll Meet Again… so it’s been really lovely having that playing every day.” From Mirror’s report,

Mr Ward, aged 101, had a varied military career during the war and after first being called up into the London Irish Rifles he later served in North Africa before joining the Special Operations Executive to encrypt, or cipher, messages from British agents parachuted into France and Italy.

He joked about the day the war ended in Europe while he was a sergeant stationed in Greece. “VE Day was very good, I had to go round and give all the men a drink of rum,” he said with a laugh.

William replied: “I bet you were the hero of the time there Charles, delivering rum out to everybody.”

Mr Ward, from South Kirkby in Yorkshire, said he told the Cambridges about working on “secret” messages from wartime leader Sir Winston Churchill. He said: “The message came from Churchill I had to decipher it, re-incypher it and send it to his son in Yugoslavia to say ‘Happy Birthday’.

Duchess of Cambridge visited Bletchley Park on D-Day Landing
Kensington Palace twitter

A really nice gesture from William when he talked about Catherine’s Great-grandmother Valerie Glassborow, who worked with the legendary Bletchley Park code breakers during the war. About her Duchess said, “It’s so sad that she’s not here today. I would love to speak to her more about it”. You might remember Duchess visited the Bletchley Park last year to mark the D-Day landing.

Duke and Duchess of Cambridge marked the VE Day

Talking the veterans James Pyett and Thelma Hobden, Duchess said, “George is just starting to learn about the Second World War and would be really honoured to come and speak to you, so maybe another time George can have a chat with you to hear all your stories”. It was really nice of her to say this as it is really important that our coming generations must learn about the sacrifice our ancestors made to achieve the brighter and secure future. Continuing from Mirror,

Resident James Pyett, 95, also chatted to the royals and he said: “They said to me ‘we’ve heard you’ve had some adventures during the Blitz’.” The family of the veteran, who served as a driver with the Royal Corps of Signals during the war, were bombed out of their Limehouse home in the East End of London, but when they sought refugee in Bournemouth they found themselves targeted again by the Luftwaffe.

The 95-year-old said: “I was blown up and put in hospital and my father said ‘right if we’re going to be bombed here, we’re going back to London’.” Mr Pyett said his family were given a home in Clapham, south London but within hours of moving in their new property was destroyed.

“My mum was down the air raid shelter but we were up in the house when the house got bombed, the roof fell in and we were covered in dust and dirt,” he said.

“We went into the air raid shelter and my mother looked at my father and she said ‘I knew we bloody well should have stayed in Bournemouth’.”

Jean Hull, 78 from Little Eaton in Derbyshire, was a small child on VE Day but went on to serve with the Queen Alexandra’s Royal Naval Nursing Service.

The Queen, who also served in the WWII, today addressed the nation at 9pm, the exact time her father spoke in 1945. The poignant address to mark the 75th anniversary of VE Day, also praised the Britain’s response to the corona virus epidemic that has filled empty streets with “love”.

On 8 May 1945, King George VI made a radio broadcast to the people of the Commonwealth to mark the end of the war. The Queen was 19 years old on VE Day. More than thirty years later, she recorded her memories for a unique BBC Broadcast.

I remember lines of unknown people linking arms and walking down Whitehall, all of us just swept along on a tide of happiness and relief.

Queen talked about how she and her sister Princess Margaret joined the public for the celebrations.

It was really emotional and surreal moments to listen to Queen talking about the day.

Princess Elizabeth changing the tire of the war jeep
The Royal Family

The Queen, then Princess Elizabeth, joined the Auxiliary Territorial Service (ATS) in 1945 at the age of 18, and trained as a driver and mechanic. The Queen is the first and only female member of the Royal Family to join the Armed Services as a full-time active member. he Queen held the rank of Second Subaltern on joining the ATS. Five months later, she was later promoted to Junior Commander, the equivalent of Captain.

The Young Princess Elizabeth and her sister joined the public of VE DAY celebrations in 1945
The Royal Family

Marking the day, The Prince of Wales read an extract from his grandfather King George VI’s diary which describes The King’s experience of VE Day on 8th May 1945.

Earlier he and Duchess of Cornwall led the nation for 2 minutes silence to honour the service and sacrifice of the WWII generation and reflect on the devastating impact Covid-19 has had on so many lives across the world.

Queen Elizabeth II addressed the Nation to mark the VEDay
Kensington Palace Instagram

If it was not for the lock-down due to the COVID-19, the Royal Family would have been out and about leading the country in the celebration. Since the beginning of the year, plannings and preparations were in full swing. Earlier in the year a full procession was being reported to mark the day, but Coronavirus changed the plans. But as Queen Elizabeth II said in her message, “Never Give Up, Never Despair”, we might see the celebrations being held once again to mark this historic event sometime in future. From Queen’s message today,

Today it may seem hard that we cannot mark this special anniversary as we would wish. Instead we remember from our homes and our doorsteps. But our streets are not empty; they are filled with the love and the care that we have for each other. And when I look at our country today, and see what we are willing to do to protect and support one another, I say with pride that we are still a nation those brave soldiers, sailors and airmen would recognise and admire.

LK Bennett 'Cayla' Cardinal Red Dress
LK Bennett Cayla Dress

For the video call, I believe Duchess brought back her LK Bennett Cayla Dress that she first wore to Wimbledon 2015. The vibrant £250 dress had a round neckline, princess seams and notched elbow length sleeves with full skirt that falls below the knee.

Duchess of Cambridge wore Patrick Mavros Ocean Tides Milky Quartz Earrings
Patrick Mavros Ocean Tides Milky Quartz Earrings

And her new Patrick Mavros Ocean Tides Milky Quartz Earrings as suggested by @_catherineofcam on Twitter.


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