CRAVEN didn’t disappoint when it came to celebrating the 75th anniversary of Victory in Europe Day, despite lockdown curtailing what would normally have been scenes of packed streets and tea parties.

Instead, residents showed their own respect with bunting and window displays and raised a glass at 3pm on May 8 to mirror the time Prime Minister Winston Churchill gave his victory speech.

Most residents kept a safe distance from each other, preferring to raise a toast in the safety of their gardens to all those who took part in the conflict.

Shops in the district decked out their windows and residents, along with some of the pubs which are currently closed, draped bunting.

Residents in one lucky Skipton street enjoyed an ‘Isolation Pick-Me-Up Fish & Chips VE Day’ treat served up by chef Anthony Banks, who owns and runs specialist outside catering and events company, The Ribble Valley Group.

Like many in the hospitality sector, business has been decimated by the coronavirus lockdown and Anthony, who lives in the town’s Otley Road, had the bright idea of staging a Friday evening VE Day fry-up utilising one of The Ribble Valley Group’s mobile catering units.

The launch event saw orders delivered to 14 homes, all on the same side of street as Anthony. And while needing to cover his own costs, Anthony also wanted to support a worthwhile charity, donating £60, a quarter of the takings, with some generous residents also chipping in extra, to Help For Heroes.

The success of the ‘Chippy to You” trial has prompted Anthony to repeat it this evening (Thursday, May 14), again just for Otley Road residents. All meals need to be pre-ordered by calling or texting Anthony on 07951 231987.

In The Bailey, 1940s singer and entertainer Harriet Ball, who goes under the guise of Hattie Bee, sang We’ll Meet Again at 9pm and kept up a steady flow of songs online.

She also raised £200 on the day for the Royal British Legion.

“The videos are all still online on the virtual VE Day Facebook page, including the link on where to donate. We had viewers from all around the world, which was very exciting,” she said.

Skipton BID organised a short video of pre-recorded key events from the armed forces community in the castle grounds. In included the laying of a wreath by Barry Blood, president of Skipton Royal British Legion branch.

The bugle and bagpipes were played by Skipton air cadets brothers John and James Brown and a Let Us Remember prayer was read by Rev Roger Lowans, of Holy Trinity Church.

The Skipton community and businesses went online with a full list of events for residents to join in and were published on Skipton BID facebook page. These included a 3,000 step march with Jo Moseley as she climbed Mount Everest from her back yard, a virtual social coffee morning with Skipton’s high street Kibble cafe, a family quiz from The Boat House Bar, a living room 1940s line dance with Fire House Dance and a Best of British sing-a-long with The Fleece Inn.

In Hellifield, the village commemorated the day with entertainment around the area. Music and afternoon teas were held, and despite the lockdown and social distancing rules, people sang along to the sounds of the ‘40s, with music from Pauline Wright and Ian and Jane Jones.

With the benefits of live singing through sound systems, plus popular music of the times, and a quiz from Ian - plus a new rendition of the ‘Dad’s Army’ theme, the atmosphere was suitably enjoyable and reflective. At 9 p.m. Dale Cardus hosted a rendition of ‘We’ll Meet Again’ from his home in Wheelwright Court.

Settle Town Council laid a wreath at the war memorial while residents of Sandholme area of Giggleswick had separate garden parties. Langcliffe was decked in red, white and blue and individual homes had their own door wreaths and displays. One of the most commented displays was a mannekin at Northlyn which sported a siren suit, gas mask and tin hat.

Villages round about did their bit too. Newton Grange Farm road end boasted a sign and Union flag, while Gargrave decked the bus shelter with bunting.

The Dalesman Cafe window display was also a talking point.