When is VE Day 2022? What happened on Victory in Europe Day - and what celebrations will take place this year?

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This year is the 77th annual VE Day, which marks a significant date in World War Two

The annual celebration of VE Day will take place at the beginning of May, and people up and down the country will come together to pay tribute to those who fought in World War Two (WW2).

Public celebrations are expected to be back in full force in 2022, after two years of scaled back or cancelled events due to the Covid pandemic.

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So, just what is VE Day, when is it and how will it be celebrated?

Here’s what you need to know.

What is VE Day?

VE Day stands for Victory in Europe Day.

It marks the day in 1945, during the Second World War, when Prime Minister Winston Churchill announced that fighting Nazi Germany in Europe had come to an end.

The war had begun on 1 September 1939 with Hitler’s invasion of Poland which drove Great Britain and France to declare war on Germany.

VE Day was not, however, the official end of World War Two as many European soldiers still had to fight in Japan.

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The end of the war came just over three months later, on 15 August 1945.

This date, and September 2, which is when Japan signed a document to officially surrender, are both known as VJ Day or Victory in Japan Day.

When is VE Day?

VE Day takes place every year on 8 May.

That means that this year it will be on Sunday 8 May, and it is now 77 years since VE Day.

How is VE Day celebrated?

On 8 May 1945, British people took to the streets to celebrate the Prime Minister’s announcement that fighting had finished, and together they sang, danced and enjoyed food and drink.

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In London, people dressed in red, white, and blue, and gathered outside Buckingham Palace, and the royal family appeared on the balcony to welcome the crowds.

Today, people still continue to celebrate the anniversary by hosting gatherings with friends and family. In some places, there are also large street parties where members of the community gather just as they did in 1945.

Many people also decorate their homes with posters and bunting designed specifically for the occasion.

Some dress in costumes which are made to look like clothes typical of the 1940s era, such as vintage dresses for women and suits for men.

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The 75th anniversary of VE Day was held in 2020, and to mark the significance of the date the early May bank holiday, usually held on May Day, was moved to Friday 8 May.

Community events were planned to take place across all three days up and down the country, but most of them had to be cancelled or postponed due to Covid restrictions.

VE Day celebrations in 2021 were also impacted by the coronavirus pandemic, but in 2022 events are expected to be back in full swing as restrictions are no longer in place.

Local events will take place in cities, towns and villages across the UK.

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How do we commemorate fallen soldiers on VE Day?

VE Day is also important for remembering those who lost their lives in the Second World War, and to commend those who survived.

In the UK, a two-minute silence is held at 3pm on VE Day.

This is a time for people to reflect on the suffering which occurred during World War Two, remember the sacrifice made by those who lost their lives, and thank them for their sacrifice.

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