[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Sunday, 14 August 2005, 17:57 GMT 18:57 UK
VJ Day commemorated around the UK
Veterans in Glasgow watch the flypast
Veterans remembered their comrades in Glasgow
Commemorations have been held around the country to mark VJ Day, when Japan's surrender brought an end to the Second World War.

Blenheim Palace in Oxfordshire staged the largest event - a festival re-enacting the sights and sounds of 1940s Britain.

In Glasgow, thousands gathered for a parade while flypasts were held at RAF Kinloss and Wick airport in Caithness.

Veterans also met in Cardiff and Gwent in Wales to remember their comrades.

Swing concert

Thousands attended the Festival of Flight event at Blenheim Palace.

Among the attractions were a four-hour air display by 40 planes including the Sally B Flying Fortress and the Red Arrows.

Musicians, dancers, singers, classic car and military vehicle enthusiasts also entertained the crowds.

As dusk fell the John Miller Orchestra performed a swing concert.

VJ Day - which is on Monday - marks the day when Japan surrendered to the Allies on 15 August 1945, days after the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki were destroyed by atomic bombs.

Wartime Britain

The weapons were carried on board American B-29 bombers, developed from the B-17 Flying Fortresses which flew missions over Europe.

The only working example of a B-17 in Britain, known as Sally B, was the centrepiece of the afternoon air show at Blenheim.

In this VJ Day 60th anniversary year every opportunity must be taken to acknowledge their contribution
Lord Blandford

Lord Blandford, one of the festival organisers, said the event possessed "so many dimensions from this time of great turmoil in our history and it's fitting that it takes place at the birthplace of Winston Churchill".

Commenting on the Britons who served their country during the war, he added: "In this VJ Day 60th anniversary year every opportunity must be taken to acknowledge their contribution."

Last Parade

Elsewhere in the UK, services and events were held to honour British veterans of the Far East campaign.

Thousands of people gathered in Glasgow for the Last Parade, organised by the Royal British Legion Scotland.

Musicians, schoolchildren, servicemen and ex-servicemen marched from Blythswood Square to George Square for a service on Sunday.

First Minister Jack McConnell and Glasgow's Lord Provost Elizabeth Cameron were among those who attended.

'Massive debt'

Mr McConnell said: "Those who fought in the Far East faced particular cruelty and inhumane conditions.

"Now, 60 years on, we stop, we remember and we give thanks."

On Sunday evening, Royal British Legion bands will perform a Beating Retreat at Kelvin Hall International Sports Arena.

Planes fly over Blenheim Palace
An air show was among the attractions at Blenheim Palace

Elsewhere in Scotland, a Nimrod from RAF Kinloss was flown over the Kinnaird Lighthouse car park at Fraserburgh, and later flew past Wick airport.

Sacrifice

In Wales, the Gwent branch of the Royal British Legion hosted an afternoon drumhead service at Tredegar House in Newport.

Claire Williams, the legion's county field officer for mid and south Wales said: "This is the legion's way of reminding those veterans, and the community at large, that we acknowledge their heroism."

Members of Cardiff's Burma Star Association also met at St John's Church in the city centre where a window is dedicated to the Far East campaigns.

Sunday's events follow similar commemorations held around the world to mark Victory in Europe Day - proclaimed on May 8, 1945.




BBC NEWS: VIDEO AND AUDIO
Watch the commemorations at Blenheim Palace



RELATED BBC LINKS:

RELATED INTERNET LINKS:
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


PRODUCTS AND SERVICES

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific