A THREE-day programme of VE Day celebratory events has been revealed.

Organised by the Royal British Legion, with support from Cumbria County Council and Carlisle City Council, the 75th anniversary celebration will be held between Friday and Sunday, May 8 to 10.

All of the events will be held in Carlisle city centre’s pedestrianised shopping area and will be free to attend.

The programme will include a military parade, kicking off at Carlisle Castle at 2.30pm on Friday, May 8.

Participants at the parade will include the Royal British Legion and other military personnel.

Other uniformed organisations, such as scouts, cadets and guides, plus armed forces veterans, are encouraged to take part.

The parade will march from the Castle towards the Old Town Hall.

At 3pm there will be a Churchillian speech and open-air multi-faith service.

This is open to all to attend and will include hymns, thanksgiving and prayers.

The Border Concert Band will accompany the service which is expected to last about 20 minutes.

On Saturday, May 9, an afternoon of music from the World War II era will be held in the city centre between 1pm and 4pm.

The jam-packed extravanagsa of sound will include performers such as the Cliff Eland Band, the Carlisle Ukulele Band, Cindy the Forces Sweetheart, Dog on the Couch and the University of Cumbria’s Sorelli A Capella Group.

The day of celebration is an event for all ages, and aims to reflect a bygone era.

A Cathedral service will be held on Sunday, May 10.

Another military parade will take place, this time starting from the Castle at 12.30pm.

Following the service, the parade will march back to the Castle.

All are welcome to attend the service of thanksgiving which starts at 1pm.

Major Rtd A P Chandler, representing the Royal British Legion, told The Cumberland News: “Preparations are well underway for Carlisle’s VE Day programme of events.

“We want as many organisation and individuals to get involved and join in the celebrations.

“With only a few months to go until VE Day, we urge people to contact us and to put the dates in their diaries.”

Cumbria’s Museum of Military Life in Carlisle Castle will also be part of the celebrations with events on both Friday, May 8 and Saturday, May 9, between 10am and 2pm.

VE (Also, known as Victory in Europe) Day – took place on May 8, 1945.

It meant an end to nearly six years of a war that had cost the lives of millions; had destroyed homes, families, and cities; and had brought huge suffering and privations to the populations of entire countries.

Millions of people rejoiced in the news that Germany had surrendered, relieved that war was finally over.

In towns and cities across the world, including Britain, people marked the victory with street parties, dancing and singing.

A national holiday was declared in Britain to mark VE Day.

During the morning of May 8, 1945, Churchill had gained assurances from the Ministry of Food that there were enough beer supplies in the capital and the Board of Trade announced that people could purchase red, white and blue bunting without using ration coupons.

There were even commemorative items hastily produced in time for the celebrations, including ‘VE Day’ mugs.

Some restaurants had special ‘victory’ menus too.

Those wishing to get involved in the parades should contact Major Rtd A P Chandler at apchandler@hotmail.co.uk or call 07860 961548 prior to the event to confirm their attendance.

For more about VE Day visit: www.veday75.org