Forties Weekend of spectacular free events

Spitfire Replica photo: Alan Wilson

Spitfire Replica photo: Alan Wilson

King Lynn is getting set for a weekend of spectacular free events this July 18 & 19.

The events will include something for all the family – flypasts, musical performances, displays, a tea dance and much more.

On Saturday 18 July 42F (King’s Lynn) Squadron Air Training Corps will exercise their Freedom of the Borough for the very first time. Celebrations, including a performance by Marham Bluebirds Military Wives Choir and Springwood High School Concert Band, will begin in King’s Staithe Square at 11.30, with the formal parade taking place at 12.45. There will be stalls to explore and not one, but two honorary flypasts – the first by a Grace Spitfire, at 13.00 and the second, by a Dakota at 14.20.

The Flight Path of the Spitfire sculpture trail will also be launched at the event. Designed in conjunction with the borough council and sponsored by local businesses to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the Battle of Britain, the trail includes 24 Spitfire sculptures – each uniquely decorated.

Trail maps, including a prize draw competition, will be available from King’s Staithe Square on 18 July and from King’s Lynn Tourist Information Centre throughout the summer. The sculptures will be in place until 30 September.

To celebrate the launch of the trail, a life-size replica MK805 Spitfire will be on display in Tuesday Market Place on Saturday 18 July. The craft, which has taken its creator, Terry Arlow, over 25 years to complete and is based on original drawings, will also be the centrepiece on Sunday 19 July (10 – 4 pm), when visitors will be invited to step back to the 1940s for Forties Lynn: Life on the Home Front.

In Tuesday Market Place, alongside the Spitfire replica, there will be a display of military and civilian vehicles from the period and vintage market, as well as forties music, courtesy of Timescape. People will also have the chance to meet wartime characters including Winston Churchill and be able to explore the air raid shelter beneath the car park.

The original Corporal Jones’ butchers’ van from television favourite Dad’s Army will be on display in the Vancouver Quarter and the team from the Dad’s Army Museum, Thetford will be on hand to give shoppers an insight into the Home Guard.

At King’s Lynn Town Hall people can join in a tea dance, get a forties makeover, test out a Morrison shelter and learn all about the role of the town hall in the response to war from characters from the period, as well as picking up a sweet ration card that can be exchanged for a treat at Lynn Museum, where there will be a variety of wartime-themed activities and displays to explore.


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