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When war finally came to an end... 70 years on, Belfast remembers

By Rebecca Black

Published 08/05/2015

Seated, from left: Susan Neilly, Nell Kerr, Andrew Turkington, Sue McCrory, Norma McCullough,Grace Murphy and Noel McCullough enjoy a Victory in Europe party at the War Memorial museum in Talbot Street, Belfast
Seated, from left: Susan Neilly, Nell Kerr, Andrew Turkington, Sue McCrory, Norma McCullough,Grace Murphy and Noel McCullough enjoy a Victory in Europe party at the War Memorial museum in Talbot Street, Belfast
Norma McCullough and Grace Murphy examine a wartime ration book
Corporal Mollie Whiteside from Dungannon and Aircraftwoman Terry Trace from Nottingham celebrate back in 1945
Serving up: Elizabeth Doran, curator/manager at the NI War Memorial building in Belfast
A VE Day street party in Medway Street in 1945

A two-minute silence will be held in Belfast today to mark 70 years since the defeat of Nazi Germany in the Second World War.

Victory in Europe Day marks the moment six years of bloody conflict that left millions dead finally came to a close in Europe on May 8, 1945.

The nation is set to fall silent at 3pm today as a service of remembrance is held at the Cenotaph in London marking the moment Winston Churchill broadcast his historic speech formally announcing the end of the war in Europe.

Across the UK more than 200 beacons will be lit tonight in commemoration.

Tomorrow, bells at cathedrals will ring out for victory at 11am, and on Sunday members of the royal family will join armed forces veterans for a service of thanksgiving at Westminster Cathedral.

In Belfast a two-minute silence will take place at the gallery of the Northern Ireland War Memorial on Talbot Street in Belfast at 3pm today.

This will be followed by an afternoon tea, which includes wartime ration-recipe carrot cake. A guest of honour at the event will be Betty Porter, who worked at City Hall during the war years and has donated a scrapbook relating to VE Day.

Tomorrow the venue will host a family event which will include a victory party in the gallery with the chance to learn some dances under the direction of The Belle Hoppers, play games, sing tunes from the 1940s, and sample rationed treats such as patriotic pudding and celebration trifle.

Those who did not return home from war and those who were not liberated until later in 1945 on VJ (Victory in Japan) Day will be remembered at the war memorial gallery during an event in August.

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