Bradford V.E. Day

Archive: Yorkshire Film Archive
ID No.: 764
Title: Bradford V.E. Day
Date: 1945
Film-maker: Mr Sharp
Colour: Black & White
Sound: Silent
Duration of complete item: 18 min.
Themes: Victory Celebrations in 1945


An amateur film showing the V.E. Day celebrations in the centre of Bradford on 8th May, 1945.


The film opens with a still from a newspaper headline reading ‘Germany Surrenders - All Troops Ordered To Lay Down Arms.’ The film then shows crowds of people in the centre of Bradford huddled under umbrellas, watching a band play.

The Lord Mayor of Bradford, Mr Cecil Barnett, and other dignitaries gather on the steps of the Bradford Town Hall. They give speeches to the large crowd of people, who wave Union Jack flags in celebration of the Proclamation of Peace.

An intertitle reads 'V.E. Day Celebrations' and the film shows views of the Town Square, where crowds are dancing and celebrating. Two women in WRENS uniform waltz together, and more women are shown doing the Hokey Cokey. The next shot shows a military procession making their way through the huge crowd gathered outside the Town Hall. Everyone is celebrating and women kiss and hug the troops as they pass by. People carrying on dancing behind them, and one elderly woman dances on her own in front of a large crowd.

Trumpet players perform at the Town Hall steps and a man pretends to conduct them in a comical manner. We see small children dancing together on the pavement. A man, women and small girl then pose for the camera. The little girl wears a party hat and waves a Union Jack. the city streets can be seen in the background. The film closes with scenes from a hospital rag day. The Lord Mayor is shaved by people in fancy dress on the Town Hall steps as part of the rag day activities.


On VE Day 1945, in large cities such as Bradford, the public congregated to hear speeches from local dignitaries; take part in victory parades and sing, dance, celebrate and give thanks together. Amateur film maker, Mr Sharp, captured the scenes in the centre of Bradford on that day.

Mr Sharp owned an electrical shop in the town and, as an amateur film maker, captured these scenes in the centre of Bradford on V.E. Day. His film collection covers many local events and activities in and around Bradford in the 1940’s and 1950’s, including local events such as ‘Salute the Soldier Week’, ‘Holidays at Home’ as well as the Victory celebrations.

Bradford V.E. Day (1945)

Bradford V.E. Day (1945)

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