‘We will not be defeated’ - Town plans scaled-down VJ Day service

A Remembrance Day service at Cromer church. A scaled-down VJ Day commemoration is planned to take pl

A Remembrance Day service at Cromer church. A scaled-down VJ Day commemoration is planned to take place there on August 15. Picture: Neil Didsbury - Credit: Archant

A town councillor says Covid-19 will be faced down just like Britain’s Second World War enemies 75 years ago, ahead of scaled-down VJ Day commemorations.

David Pritchard, Cromer town councillor, said the pandemic could be overcome with the same resolve shown in the wartime years.

Mr Pritchard, who is chairman of the council’s works and general purposes committee, said: “This year we were due to celebrate, commemorate and remember so many important events which happened in the Second World War and in the last 80 years. As ever, Cromer Town Council had risen to the occasion to acknowledge those who fought and defended our country from the Nazi threat.

“Sadly, the entire country has had to face a new threat in the name of Covid-19 and similar to the days of the Second World War, the town and country will not be defeated.

“The enemy was defeated then and we will defeat this new enemy and I look forward to next year when again, the council and town will join together in a safer environment to and celebrate what has been achieved.”

MORE: First look at how ‘Weeping Window’ display of ceramic poppies will lookThe council has agreed low-key VJ Day commemorations will go ahead on Saturday, August 15. A local bagpiper, Jacob Millin, will perform ‘Battle’s o’er’ at sunrise, and the mayor, Richard Leeds, will lay a wreath at the war memorial next to the parish church. Standard bearers from the Royal British Legion’s Cromer branch and women’s section will be present.

More major commemorations for VJ Day and Victory in Europe Day in May have been rescheduled to next year because of the lockdown restrictions.

These would have included a ‘weeping window’ display of more than 4,000 ceramic poppies at the parish church, a tea party for Second World War veterans and a flypast by a Spitfire fighter plane.

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Julie Chance, town clerk, said: “The decision was both difficult and upsetting to make as so much hard work had taken place along with an enormous amount of preparation. Ultimately though, we knew we had no option.

“Council are already planning what we can do for next year to make up for the disappointment over cancelling the events planned for this year.

“We are hoping to do something which will also incorporate the thanks of the Council and residents for everyone who has volunteered through ‘Cromer Cares’ during the Covid-19 crisis to look after and assist those in the town who were at higher risk.”