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Successful celebrations at Westward Ho!

15.5.1945 WHo

An effigy of Hitler, dressed in a swallow-tail coat, given by a well known resident, taken around with children ringing handbells and telling all that the burning of same would take place later that evening; dancing taking place around this bonfire until 12 midnight, a collection for the Westward Ho! Welcome Home Fund realising £16; community singing and some amusement in fancy dress concluded on Thursday one of the series of very successful celebrations at Westward Ho!

Previously, on VE evening at the Kingsley Gym, a crowded Victory concert was presented by the ‘Geneva Revels’ in aid of the Church Roof Fund. The King’s speech was heard during an interval. On Wednesday evening a whist drive in aid of the Westward Ho! Welcome Home Fund and a dance at the Top Camp took place.

A grand victory dance took place in the Kingsley Gym on Friday evening, including many old fashioned dances and competitions. Mrs Douglas Lane and Mrs Bouverie were the judges.

On Saturday, the children and their parents assembled in the park and marched to the sands, where, by kind permission of the military, amphibious ‘Ducks’ waited to take them for a trip around Bideford Bay. Some 600 people took trips.

Afterwards the children were given tea and ices. Later, dancing took place in the park followed by a bonfire, with thunder flashes, etc. At about 11pm a massive crowd assembled around the bonfire to sing the latest songs with music on a piano-accordian by a soldier. Three special cheers were given for the men still fighting with the South-East Asia Command.

Rosettes, made and sold in aid of the Welcome Home Fund, sponsors of which were Mesdames Hutchings and Day, realised £7 3s. The Committee wish to thank all associated with the celebrations, especially Messrs Wills, Jeffery, and Mr Wiley for the loan of his radiogram.

Gazette article dated 15 May 1945

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