Christmas greetings – 1945

In 2020, many plans for commemorating the 75th anniversaries of the end of World War II in Europe (8th May) and against Japan (15th August) were cancelled or adjusted due to Covid 19 restrictions.

By Christmas in 1945 the war was over, though many of the five million British servicemen and women would still have been waiting for demobilisation.

At Market Lavington Museum, we have recently been given a Christmas card from 1945. It was sent to Bert and Florrie. Before her marriage to Bert Shore, Florrie (née Burbidge) had grown up in the cottage at the edge of St Mary’s churchyard, which now houses the museum. This is the message on the back of the card.

The front of the card is very obviously just post war.

The verse alludes to the fact that church bells had been silent for the duration of the war and that people would know that, if the bells had rung, it would have been a warning of invasion or air raids. During the war, the German enemy was sometimes referred to derogatorily as ‘ The Hun’. Air raid warnings usually took the form of a siren. When the danger had passed, the siren call was reversed to descending tones, signalling the ‘Al Clear’.

Market Lavington Museum wishes our readers some Christmas 2020 ‘Joy and Cheer’ at the end of a difficult year.

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