A celebration of all things 1940’s!
The Dig for Victory Festival is held every year in Somerset, showcasing fashion, vehicles and military weapons of the 1940’s wartime era as well as some modern elements with historic flair. We arrived early after picking up Scott’s father-in-law Steve, found a parking spot close to the entrance and queued up. As we made our way in the organisers and staff were all dressed up in period fashion.
We wandered around the stalls checking out some of the wares on offer from the various stallholders, a lot of knick-knacks and fashion items inside the marquee there were a few food stalls and the sewing centre (where they held various workshops across the weekend). On the other side of this was the main stage where various period dancing classes and live music were held, along with the food trucks and drinks.
We tried the local cider, I had a half pint of the sweet variant. I must be working my way well along the spectrum because I found it way to sweet (where a few years ago I probably would have enjoyed it).
After the quick break while Steve had a chat with the St John’s Ambulance crew we made our way to the anti-air cannon display. Here they had three British anti-air cannons set up to perform a live-fire demonstration. Though as they were setting up the third cannon had jammed and they were only able to fire with the two remaining cannons.
After the demonstration we stopped to have a bite to eat for lunch and another wander through the market stalls. Not that I could buy much more at this point because my case is already over the weight allowance so I need to try and keep it within the 5kg extra I’ll need to pay for (or just buy another case and go for it over the next few days). Sarah mentioned they still have one of Scott’s sister’s cases that I might be able to use in a pinch if I need to. Everything still fits in my current case though, it’s just overweight.
The next demonstration was artillery display. One of the mobile artillery platforms was set up as though it was being deployed in the field and was then fired in similar fashion to the anti-aircraft cannons. This thing was bloody loud. You actually felt it in your chest when it fired. Three shots from that and then the crew packed it up as they would have in the field and moved it on to the next destination. In this case the next field over, but back in the war the artillery was moved between various fronts to help push or hold a line.
The last demonstration we checked out was the skirmish. Two squads imitating being a British and American training exercise. The Americans had a RPG and the British had a personnel transport that was taken out by the RPG to initiate the skirmish. After some back and forth between the squads the British came out on top and then the skirmishers combed the field for shell casings as we were in an active farm and nobody wanted the old farm animals eating bullet casings they shouldn’t be eating.
That pretty much brought the day to a close. The time here is coming to an end but it has been an amazing time.