VE Day 75 message from the Chief Executive

May 8, 2020
Black and white VE Day crowd

Dear All,

Today the Nation marks the 75th Anniversary of Victory in Europe. Plans for how it will be marked by the Reserves and Cadets within the Highlands have had to be modified substantially due to Covid-19, but commemorate they will via online and social media means and other non face-to-face activities. Could I ask all who will be commemorating the event in some shape or form to please send in photographs or links to the Engagement Team and we will re-publish them for you. Please send them to Communications Officer Annushka Bholai at [email protected].

As an organisation whose purpose has been to support the Army reserves since 1908 our antecedents, the Territorial Army County Associations, played their part in the lead-up to the Second World War, which saw a doubling in size of the Army reserves to 440,000 just before the outbreak of the War and a requirement for many more barracks. While all reserve units were mobilised on the outbreak of war and were assimilated into the Royal Navy, Army and Royal Air Force, there are many stories of significant contributions by reservists during the course of the War. In doing a little bit of research I came across this short but interesting Ministry of Defence Historical Branch publication which I share with you HERE.

Pages 17 to 27 cover the period leading up to and during WW2.

National events begin at 11am today with a two-minute silence and I ask everyone to take the time to mark that with us if they can. It is very fitting that Her Majesty the Queen will address the nation later at 9pm (the same time as her father King George VI announced victory in Europe). In this time of lockdown, with so many additional lives lost to the virus and NHS and Care sector staff battling to keep on top of it, there is real added poignancy to this commemoration, which is as much about victory thanks to a whole nation’s effort as much as about military victory.

With best wishes,

Brigadier (Retd) Mark Dodson MBE
Chief Executive Highland Reserve Forces’ and Cadets’ Association