Report: Darwen 1940s Day 2011

Lancashire Telegraph: FORCES’ SWEETHEART Linda Dee as Vera Lynn serenades the crowd in Darwen’s Market Square FORCES’ SWEETHEART Linda Dee as Vera Lynn serenades the crowd in Darwen’s Market Square

DARWEN's 1940s Day yesterday may have lacked an appearance of the Red Arrows, but it was still a ‘spectacular success’.

The world famous RAF flying team was due to fly over the wartime-themed event but cancelled following the death of Flt Lt Jon Egging, 33, last month.

But there were still plenty of attractions to keep the crowds entertained.

The day, organised by the Soldiers Support Group in aid of the ABS soldiers charity, featured a parade, vintage and military vehicles, Darwen Brass Band, Milltown Cloggies and swing music.

Organiser Pat Melia said: “In spite of the rain it was very busy and people were clearly having a good time.

"The Red Arrows cancelled their entire Northern Ireland tour, and we were told a week in advance.

“Luckily there was a lot for people to see and do, the Houghton Weavers alone were a massive attraction. Everyone stayed until the very end. It was a great day."

The day began at 10am as the Darwen Town Crier Coun Anthony Meleady introduced the Mayor of Darwen Coun Paul Browne.

Mayor Coun Paul Browne introduced guest of honour Kingsman James Kenyon, who started an air raid siren to signal the beginning of the event.

Visitors were able to enjoy a spread of typical food from the period in Darwen Market Hall and the Bridgewater, while a climbing wall and children’s activities were also supplied.

Entertainment was provided by 40s singers the Octavius Sisters and swing music from singer Ricky Lee.

Crowds were also entertained by winner of Darwen’s Got Talent Competition 2010, Pamela Hacking, the Houghton Weavers and the Banjo Man.

Winners are urged to come forward to claim their raffle prizes.

A signed Blackburn Rovers shirt was won by pink ticket 350.

Pink tickets 816-820 won a digital photo frame, white tickets 121-125 won a voucher for the Mangiamo restaurant, and white tickets 386-390 won a voucher for the Friar Rugg chip shop.

A Mark Graham salon voucher was won by white tickets 556-560, three bottles of wine by pink tickets 916-920, a CD organiser by pink tickets 661-665, a pair of headphones by pink tickets 771-775, and a citrus juicer by tickets 826-830.

To claim a prize, telephone 07970 215399. The ration book booklet must be produced.

Click on the link below for our photo gallery.

Comments (5)

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3:09pm Mon 5 Sep 11

Mothernature says...

Looks like I was at a different event on Saturday (or in a time slip). There was no sign of vintage or military vehicles. Activities for the children was the normal bouncy castle/slide that is there every weekend and the boxing ring on the banks' car park. Personally the highlights for me were the Houghton Weavers & the parade. All in all it was badly organised and very little advertising made sure a lot of local people didn't know about it. If this is to become an annual event, the organisers need to look long and hard at their failures this time round.
Looks like I was at a different event on Saturday (or in a time slip). There was no sign of vintage or military vehicles. Activities for the children was the normal bouncy castle/slide that is there every weekend and the boxing ring on the banks' car park. Personally the highlights for me were the Houghton Weavers & the parade. All in all it was badly organised and very little advertising made sure a lot of local people didn't know about it. If this is to become an annual event, the organisers need to look long and hard at their failures this time round. Mothernature

5:55pm Mon 5 Sep 11

Bernard Righton says...

Every day is a 1940's day in Darwen....
Every day is a 1940's day in Darwen.... Bernard Righton

9:13pm Mon 5 Sep 11

amazed says...

What a couple of miseries you two are. Whatever Darwen does, there is always someone who likes to "knock it" If you can't be constructive why not try to put on an event of your own?
One thing in the write up amused me - I don't think that the male members of the Octavius SINGERS would like to be called the Octavius SISTERS!! Come on Emma, get your facts right!!
What a couple of miseries you two are. Whatever Darwen does, there is always someone who likes to "knock it" If you can't be constructive why not try to put on an event of your own? One thing in the write up amused me - I don't think that the male members of the Octavius SINGERS would like to be called the Octavius SISTERS!! Come on Emma, get your facts right!! amazed

12:35am Wed 7 Sep 11

Kiwihead says...

I wasn't there so I couldn't possibly comment.
I wasn't there so I couldn't possibly comment. Kiwihead

1:11pm Thu 8 Sep 11

ireneroberts says...

My husband and I travelled from Wigan and couldn't find the venue until we spotted some people in military uniforms.....a few signs would have been helpful to people from outside Darwen.Then we couldn't find a parking space and drove round town twice, and were just about to give up and go home when someone moved their car and we grabbed the space! However, once at the venue we had a marvellous time, with the friendliest people coming up to us and talking about our 1940s clothes, and taking photos....fame at last! The lady singer in army uniform was fantastic, as were the clog-dancers, The Houghton Weavers and the Banjo Man. See you next year!
My husband and I travelled from Wigan and couldn't find the venue until we spotted some people in military uniforms.....a few signs would have been helpful to people from outside Darwen.Then we couldn't find a parking space and drove round town twice, and were just about to give up and go home when someone moved their car and we grabbed the space! However, once at the venue we had a marvellous time, with the friendliest people coming up to us and talking about our 1940s clothes, and taking photos....fame at last! The lady singer in army uniform was fantastic, as were the clog-dancers, The Houghton Weavers and the Banjo Man. See you next year! ireneroberts

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