Accrington to be transformed to 1940s for D-Day 80th anniversary commemoration

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This Lancashire town will be transported back in time with an amazing war re-enactment!

Accrington is due to host a spectacular war re-enactment to commemorate the 80th anniversary of D-Day.

The event will take place at 1pm on Saturday June 1 in the grounds of St James' Church and will feature a performance from a Lone Piper from the world famous Accrington Pipe Band.

There will be a number of activities taking place throughout the Accrington Food Festival to mark D Day.There will be a number of activities taking place throughout the Accrington Food Festival to mark D Day.
There will be a number of activities taking place throughout the Accrington Food Festival to mark D Day. | Amazing Accrington

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The re-enactment will showcase a battle between the Germans and the Americans including parachutes draping from trees, an incredible machine gun nest plus military vehicles and many surprises along the way.

Organisers of the free to attend event, #AmazingAccrington, who are running the re-enactment as part of the 2024 Accrington Food Festival, are inviting re-enactors to attend in traditional dress to create a magnificent 1940's scene.

New to the event in 2024 is the chance to enjoy the ultimate flying experience with a Spitfire flight simulator, for ages 10 and above. 

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Visitors will get the opportunity to take control of an iconic WWII Spitfire simulator, with fully functioning controls and instrumentation. 

Visitors to the 2024 Accrington Food Festival will get the opportunity to have a go on a Spitfire flight simulator.Visitors to the 2024 Accrington Food Festival will get the opportunity to have a go on a Spitfire flight simulator.
Visitors to the 2024 Accrington Food Festival will get the opportunity to have a go on a Spitfire flight simulator. | Amazing Accrington

Popular estate agents Pendle Hill Properties will be returning to the festival with their Candy Bomber commemoration, handing out 250 Hershey bars and 250 parachutists on a first come first served basis from 2pm.

This is to celebrate the famous Candy Bomber, Col. Gail Seymour Halvorsen, an American pilot who gained fame for dropping candy to German children during the Berlin airlift of 1948. 

The event will also feature a competition for local primary school children, with U11s invited to collect stamps from three different areas, before posting their entry cards into a 1940s themed suitcase, which will be hidden within the grounds of St James' Church.

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Prizes up for grabs include £80 for the winner (D-Day), £60 for second place (Vita) and £50 for third (Hyndburn Borough Council). 

Murray Dawson, Chair of #AmazingAccrington, said: "We are delighted to be marking the 80th anniversary of D-Day with some excellent activities taking place at the Accrington Food Festival.

"Not only are we hosting our popular re-enactment, but we have 1940s singers, an incredible Spitfire flight simulator, a competition to involve primary school children from across Hyndburn and much more!"

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The D Day commemoration will include a performance from the Accrington Pipe Band.The D Day commemoration will include a performance from the Accrington Pipe Band.
The D Day commemoration will include a performance from the Accrington Pipe Band. | Amazing Accrington

A Council spokesperson said: "The Accrington Food Festival is a great community event and one which we look forward to every year with great excitement.

"There will be a fantastic display of food and drink stalls at the event and we urge everyone to come down and embrace both #ShopLocal and amazing Lancashire produce."

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