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Birmingham's Victory Parade and VJ Day

Birmingham Remembers VE Day

Birmingham Victory Parade and VJ Day

For further information and for a larger image please click on the image, or the caption.

Victory Parade past Town Hall

Victory Parade past the Town Hall

The parade took place on Sunday 13th May with 16,000 members of the services and workers from organisations, which supported the services, marching through the city centre to pass through Victoria Square where the Lord Mayor took the salute.

Victory Parade 13 May 1945

Victory Parade 13th May 1945

This huge parade took an hour and a half to pass by and was watched by an audience of more than 100,000 men, women and children who crammed themselves into the surrounding streets and attempted to get a vantage point to view the spectacle.

The Birmingham Gazette describes some of the scenes; youngsters were perched precariously in the branches of the trees in St Phillips Churchyard and occupied most of the window-ledges along the street, people of all ages - even elderly women were standing shoulder to shoulder on the flat roofs of the street air raid shelters; young men, girls and children even contrived to retain a vantage point on the top of the scanty bus shelters at the stopping places.

Pig roast in 1945 celebrating victory

Pig Roast celebrating VJ Day

The surrender of Japan was announced at midnight on 14th August 1945 by Prime Minister Clement Atlee, in a broadcast from no. 10 Downing Street, this finally marked the end of the Second World War.

Street party in Selly Oak, 1945

Street party, Heeley Road, Selly Oak

The next 2 days were declared public holidays. Street parties and decorations and bonfires were again prepared throughout Birmingham and the Churches were open in the morning with the services well attended , but the city centre saw even more exuberant celebrations than on V.E day with crowds assembling in the early hours and staying till late in the evening. Impromptu concerts and dances sprang up every where and processions of people danced around the side streets banging dustbin lids, tea trays and other improvised musical instruments as Birmingham finally let loose the pent up emotions of the past 6 years.

'Lest We Forget' Exhibition
Lest We Forget Exhibition (Food)
Wartime Industry
VE Day Celebrations
Women in the War