The Prince of Wales will follow in the footsteps of his grandfather on the 75th anniversary of VE Day. Prince Charles will read extracts from the diaries of King George VI in a specially recorded programme to mark the event.
Charles’ readings will form part of a day of commemorations which will also see the Queen broadcast to Britain with a special message to be transmitted at 9pm on May 8th, exactly three quarters of a century after George VI spoke to mark the end of World War Two in Europe.
The heir to the throne was very close to his grandfather and spent a lot of time with him before George VI’s unexpected death in February 1952. Charles will read extracts from the King’s diaries detailing the Royal Family’s experiences on VE Day. The entries will include George VI’s reflections on his historic appearance on the balcony of Buckingham Palace when he was joined by his wife, Queen Elizabeth (later the Queen Mother), their two daughters, Elizabeth and Margaret, and the then Prime Minister, Winston Churchill.
Members of the Royal Family will also take part in video calls with World War Two veterans and surviving Home Front volunteers. There will be a two minute silence at 11am to remember all those who lost their lives during the conflict. Plans for commemorations had to be altered following the introduction of government restrictions to stop the spread of coronavirus.
The Queen’s speech to the nation on the anniversary of VE Day comes just weeks after another special address in which she spoke of staying strong in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic. She recalled the words of Dame Vera Lynn, saying then that ”we will meet again”. And following her broadcast on May 8th, people around the UK are invited to go outside and stand on their doorsteps for a national singalong of that famous wartime song.