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Thatcham to celebrate VE Day at Family Fun Day

Councillors also discuss alcohol licence for June event

John Herring

John Herring


01635 886633

Thatcham to celebrate VE Day at Family Fun Day

“THINGS are well poised” for Thatcham’s VE and VJ Day fun day celebration, including a parachute display team dropping in. 

This year’s Thatcham Family Fun Day will take on a wartime celebration to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the end of the Second World War.

The annual free fun day is organised by Thatcham Town Council and its events manager John Sacket provided a strategy update at a recent meeting.

He said that military and reenactment group Home Front History, which was involved in events last year marking Greenham Common’s role during D-Day, had been approached.

He said a commercial military parachute display company had also been contacted, as had the band of the 7 Rifles.

“We know they are available, but don’t know if they are confirmed,” Mr Sackett said. 

On Home Front History he said: “They have a lot of good and really interesting contacts.

“Things are well poised to make that event a really strong event for VE Day.

“I think it’s going pretty well in terms of where we are at.”

The town council has also asked for funding via the Greenham Trust Good Exchange platform, which will match-fund council contributions toward the event. 

An application to the Arts Council for a community engagement project has also been submitted. 

Mr Sackett said the project would utilise Berkshire Maestros with all of Thatcham’s school choirs and Newbury’s Corn Exchange for a ‘poetry in motion intergenerational project’.

This would include children talking to older people to collect memories and create poetry, alongside working with a choreographer to create a dance piece to be displayed at the fun day.

Mr Sackett said that although funding wasn’t a foregone conclusion, people had said they were “two very good pieces of work which should be fundable”. 

Supporting the work, town mayor Mike Cole (Lib Dem, Thatcham North East) said: “Something I wanted was more groups getting together.

“I think that whole intergenerational thing can be marvelous when it works.”

But he added “I think we are partially in limbo on funding” and said that the council would have to wait on bid approval for some elements. 

Councillors also discussed obtaining an alcohol licence for the event to run in a 1945 area with community stalls and bunting

“We think this could be a suitable and nicely managed, but I feel we need members approval because it has not happened in the past,” Mr Sackett said.

“If alcohol is being sold can it be sold at 1945 prices?” asked Richard Crumly (Con, Thatcham Central) enthusiastically.  

Mr Cole replied: “The question of alcohol is a sensitive one. We are not going on into the evening. 

“Personally speaking, I think if the police have no issue with it I have no issue with it.”

Stallholder bookings for the event are open, with the fun day being held on Sunday, June 28, from 10.30am until 4.30pm at the Henwick fields. 

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