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Pickering Wartime Weekend 2014

PICKERING STEPS BACK IN TIME For The Annual Wartime & 1940s Weekend 2014

A wartime themed spectacular that is the biggest of it's kind anywhere in Europe.

There's lots of information below, but do keep checking here for updates and feel free to post in our forum.

PICKERING WARTIME WEEKEND 2014 will get underway on Friday 10 October this year and will continue through the weekend on the 11th and 12th.



THE ANNUAL Pickering in Wartime Weekend is a spectacular international re-enactment event with participants coming from many parts of the world, making the Pickering Wartime Event the largest of its kind anywhere in Europe.

Along the length of the North Yorkshire Moors heritage railway from Pickering to Whitby, each railway station will hold individual events based on specific wartime themes. At the centre of the events, the historic market town of Pickering will play host to many individual events with local venues such as the Kirk Theatre's very own Pickering Musical Society performing a wartime musical comedy, the Beck Isle Museum will host a special display of wartime vehicles and weapons, the local pubs and clubs will provide live entertainment in a truly 40s style atmosphere.

Just outside of the centre of Pickering the Show-ground will offer a full itinerary of events and entertainment throughout the entire weekend.

Once again this wonderful location will turn back the clocks with the sights and sounds of the 40s for all to enjoy.


Pickering Musical Society are already planning their stage spectacular of musical comedy and singalong, taking place at the Kirk Theatre. A packed audience is expected so do book your tickets as soon as you can. www.pickeringmusicalsociety.co.uk

The pubs and clubs around the town will be entertaining with live music, singalong sessions and dance.



As usual, accommodation will be in high demand and the early bird catches the worm, so we advise having a good look through our accommodation section (linked above), all accommodation listings provide direct links to accommodation providers, so you can avoid agency booking fees & book direct with the owners.



Pickering again will extend a warm welcome to re-enactors and visitors alike over the weekend which is a delight for all to see, hear and smell. It really does take you back to the 40s.

The Beck Isle Museum will provide a location for historical and educational displays both inside the museum and within the grounds where re-enactors will be on hand to talk to people about their exhibits. www.beckislemuseum.org.uk

The North Yorkshire Moors Railway will host events along the line at stations from Pickering to Whitby. www.nymr.co.uk

At Pickering Showground there will be a packed weekend of live entertainment and re-enactments, dances, camping, trade stalls and a park & ride facility - providing shuttle buses from the show ground to the centre of town. www.pickeringshowground.co.uk

Eden Camp Modern History Museum is a real 'must see' for anyone interested in the history or WWII. The museum is 7 miles from Pickering near the junction with the A64 at Malton, visitors are are treated to a unique collection of wartime scenes, exhibits and historical documents. www.edencamp.co.uk


Pickering Wartime Weekend - Shots From the Past


Pickering Wartime Weekend 2012

PICKERING WARTIME WEEKEND 2012 got underway a day early last year with a live musical and comedy show titled: 'White Cliffs of Dover' at Pickering's Kirk Theatre, opening on Thursday night, then followed by three further nights of music and merriment.

The packed audience were treated to a wartime themed production by Maureen Symonds, of Pickering Musical Society, which included a cast of local amateur performers from Pickering and surrounding community. Maureen said "I'm very pleased with this our 13th Wartime show.

"All of the cast and crew have worked very hard, I am very proud of them all and wish to take this opportunity for thank everyone."


FREE Photographic images of Pickering Wartime Weekend 2012

All of the following images are free to use. Please read the IMPORTANT notice at the bottom of this page BEFORE using. Thank you!

Winston Churchill, re-enactor Peter Austwick playing the part of Churchill, Pickering Wartime Weekend Drag Queen, Wartime Weekend comedy show at Kirk Theatre, Pickering Hanging out the washing on the Siegfried Line, at Kirk Theatre. Part of the Pickering Wartime Weekend show 2012. Children putting on a song and dance, musical performance as part of the Pickering Wartime Weekend 2012, shows at Kirk Theatre.

Children putting on a song and dance, musical performance as part of the Pickering Wartime Weekend 2012, shows at Kirk Theatre. Has anyone seen our ship?  A comedy musical performance featuring (in no particular order) Judy Benson, Maureen Symonds and Linda Tester. As the show comes towards it's end, the cast invite the audience to take part in a wartime musical singalong. The audience and the cast sing 'I Vow to Thee My Country', along with lots of flag waving, as the evening of musical merriment reaches it's climax at Pickering's Kirk Theatre.  Photo by: Dave Roberts.

The audition sketch. Pickering's Kirk Theatre's very own interpretation of Private Pike, featuring Eleanor Squires and Tom Wrench. The cast come together singing Rule Britannia with much flag waving and the audience (out of shot) on their feet joining in. Kirk Theatre's children put on a stunning performance of dance and song to a delighted audience, depicting washing days.  Pickering Wartime Weekend event. A Musical wedding at Kirk Theatre, part of the Wartime Weekend Production.

As the show draws to an end, the audience is invited to sing along to tunes such as There'll always be an England, Rule Britannia, and We'll Meet Again. Margaret Jenkinson at the Beck Isle Museum talks to visitors about wartime rationing. Regular re-enactors, Walter & Colleen Swaford, from Fleetwood, play the part of French Resistance fighters.  Pictured showing a bit of stocking leg, outside Beck Isle Museum, Pickering.  Part of the 2012 Pickering Wartime Weekend. A german soldier is pictured throwing a grenade.

A little girl in a red coat, like a scene from Schindler's List is pictured walking across the level crossing in Levisham. German Storm Troopers are pictured blowing the doors off from a building they are raiding. Part of the Pickering Wartime Weekend, Levisham 2012. A wartime spiv is pictured attacking a police officer with a brick, while an MP points a revolver to his head. Judi Knight from Kent shows how to use material from items such as curtains to make clothing in the 1940s wartime period.

How it was done in the war.  Susan Johnson demonstrates how the washing was done during the 1940s wartime era, with a barrel of soapy water and a hand powered wringer. Carla serves refreshments in the garden of Mulberries Cafe Pickering.  Photo by: Dave Roberts.

The two hour long theatre performance featured a number comedy sketches and a singalong of wartime songs, the audience clearly in good spirits were delighted to be taking part.

Kirk Theatre Manager, Luke Arnold, said "Pickering Musical Society has been putting on shows since 1919.

"Our next big production is our annual pantomime 'Dick Whittington' produced by, David Tester from 12th to 20th January 2013.

"If anyone wants to be involved in performing or helping out at the theatre, please get in touch."

On Friday morning the town of Pickering gradually transformed backward through the wormhole of time, like an un-written Faraday chapter, or a scene from 'Dr Who'. Outside the Beck Isle Museum tents were erected, along with a display of WWII weapons and vehicles.

Inside the museum - aptly fitting such title as 'Tardis' - (with the outside of the building giving no clues to the vast collection on display inside), a special display of Bomber Command documents and photographs featuring Wombleton Aerodrome were exhibited, whilst Margaret Jenkinson, gave tutorials to visitors on wartime rationing. The museum, (a must see) for anyone wanting to take a trip down memory lane, or with an interest in the past.

By Saturday the town of Pickering was packed to bursting with thousands of re-enactors wearing wartime costumes. The railway station filled with people ready to take the steam trains along the heritage railway through the North York Moors National Park. Stopping at locations such as Levisham, re-named Le Visham for the weekend, taking on the guise of a French town under German occupation. Where re-enactors put on displays including storm troopers throwing grenades, the highlight being a raid on a building, where the doors were blown off using pyrotechnics to create rather impressive theatrical demonstration.

In Goathland, a wartime spiv was arrested as he re-enacted an attack on a police sergeant with a brick. A more sedate Judi Knight from Kent talked to people about wartime fashion, and the recycling of fabrics to make clothing, using items such as curtains, while Susan Johnson gave demonstrations of washing day equipment, using a tub of soapy water, plus a hand cranked wringer. The wringer, used for squeezing the excess water from the clothes before hanging out the washing line.

This year's 2012 event was bigger than ever, spreading all the way to Whitby, and a promotional display in York. The event was yet another roaring success, both in terms of fun and commercially for local business. Pubs, clubs, cafes and restaurants having their best takings all year, often featuring special wartime themed menus and entertainment. At Pickering WMC (Saturday night), entertainers including Paul Harper played to a packed house, where quite literally there was not even standing room left available. Hotels and guest houses were booked up, often a year in advance. People from around the U.K, Europe and beyond travelled to the area to take part in what is now Europe's most successful WWII re-enactment event. People who couldn't find accommodation in Pickering were booking lodgings in the surrounding towns and villages, including as far away as Scarborough, Filey and Bridlington, then commuting or driving into Pickering. Here's to Pickering Wartime Weekend 2013, we'll keep you posted.

Report by: Dave Roberts
15 October 2012.

FREE Photographic Images of Pickering Wartime Weekend 2010

The Pickering Wartime Weekend 2010 took place on Friday 15th, Saturday 16th and Sunday 17th of October 2010. By 2010, we were entirely digital and had migrated to high spec Nikon DSLR equipment.

Civilian re-enactor waves to the people leaving Pickering on the North Yorkshire Moors Steam Railway.A civilian lady is dressed in the typical headscarf with curlers, often seen in the 40’s.Judi Knight from Kent is pictured demonstrating 1940ís cookery skills.Paul is a very popular 1940ís entertainer, full of energy: he sings, dances and provides commentary through the PA system.  In the daytime he entertains in Pickering Railway Station - in the evenings he can be found performing in the Black Swan.

From the left: Graham, Susan, Andrew and Malgorzats Wilson.  Pictured here as Polish civilians wearing the armbands of the Polish resistance.A re-enactor carries a small dog with the dog wearing an ARP tin helmet.A Prince Philip look alike dressed in RAF Officer uniform.1940ís entertainer Lola Lamour is pictured singing to the crowds on Pickering Railway Station.

A pretty red headed lady complete with French beret and machine gun, playing the part of a French Resistance Fighter.A pretty young lady with fur collar is pictured with a big smile on her face.A man is pictured wearing 1940ís RAF uniform, with leather flying jack and large handlebar moustache.Lady is pictured with five teddy bears, four are dressed in 1940ís RAF uniform, the other in civilian dress.

Two ladies wearing fur and hats.  In the background a poster pictures a wartime woman factory worker, flexing her biceps with the slogan: We can do it!A WWII re-enactor plays the part of an Air Raid Warden and member of the ARP during an air raid in wartime England.A lady is pictured trying to look into the sky, holding her hand up to obscure the sun, she can hear an aircraft, but canít quite see it.A remote control, model German Messerschmitt Bf 109G-10 is pictured flying over the North York Moors apparently heading towards its targets.

A machine gun crew of British Home Guard are pictured with the weapon aimed high towards the sky.People in uniforms are pictured running for the air raid shelters as an Air Raid Warden winds the handle of the klaxon.A young lady in tin hat is pictured taking cover where she can, as the Messerschmitt Bf 109G-10 strafes Pickering.A group of men manning stirrup pumps are pictured tackling a fire.

A team of stretcher bearers and medics are pictured attended to a wounded woman on a stretcher.A young man receives a dressing to his head by a 1940ís nurse.A Messerschmitt Bf 109G-10 is pictured crash landed in a field.


FREE Photographic Images of Pickering Wartime Weekend 2006

The Pickering Wartime Weekend 2006 took place on Friday 13th, Saturday 14th and Sunday 15th of October 2006. It was the first time we used a digital SLR to shoot the event.

The following images are from our Image Library of 2006. Taken on an Olympus E10 DSLR. One of the earliest Digital SLR cameras, with only a 4.0 megapixel CCD Image Sensor. Prior to this, all our commercial photography had been produced on 35mm SLR cameras. The Olympus was a leap forward, proving that with true 4.0 megapixels, a great quality image could result - certainly good enough for online publications.

We still have one of the earliest of all digital cameras: The Apple Quicktake 100. This camera allowed us to be the first to publish news articles online, way before any newspapers at the time. The camera was first produced in 1994, purchased by us in 1995/96. Capable of storing eight photos at 640x480 resolution, 32 photos at 320x240 resolution, or a mixture of both sizes. It was never good enough to be taken seriously in the world of professional photography. In the early days of digital, I showed the Quicktake to a fellow professional and recall him saying, the 35mm SLR would never be replaced by digital.

Re-enactors playing the part of 1940s Civilian Workers Shirley and John Falkner taking part in the 2006 Pickering Wartime Weekend John Fisher - AKA: Arkwright, of Arkwright's Store circa 1940, pictured taking part in the 2006 Pickering Wartime Weekend Paul Dalby and Shane Hardy, pictured at Levisham.  Dressed as 1940s German Military Police, taking part in the 2006 Pickering Wartime Weekend

German Machine Gunners, at Levisham.  Taking part in the 2006 Pickering Wartime Weekend Members of the Hook up 44, re-enactment group.  Pictured in Pickering 2006.  Taking part in the Pickering Wartime Weekend. Neil Parkington as Field Marshall Montgomery.  Pictured on Pickering Railway Station, taking part in the Pickering Wartime Weekend 2006. Nurses are pictured boiling bandages.  Pickering Wartime Weekend 2006

A resistance fighter is arrested by German soldiers taking part in the 2006 Pickering Wartime Weekend 2006.  Located at Levisham. A firing squad is assembled outside the Beck Isle Museum.  Members of the Sone of Beaches - re-enactment group, camping in the museum grounds, part of the Pickering Wartime Weekend 2006.  Photo by: Dave Roberts. An MP is pictured arresting a wartime spiv, in Pickering Market Place, during the Pickering Wartime Weekend 2006 Becky Goodwin, pictured in her WWII, USA Navy Jeep.  Pickering Wartime Weekend 2006

1940s Police officers.  Pickering Wartime Weekend 2006 1940s Fashion.  Glamorous ladies of the 1940s. Pictured on Pickering Railway Station taking part in the Pickering Wartime Weekend 2006

FREE Photographic Images of Pickering Wartime Weekend 2001

The Pickering Wartime Weekend 2001 took place on Friday 19th, Saturday 20th and Sunday 21st of October 2001. It was the first time we published images from the event on Pickering Online.

Below is a selection of those images which were originally taken in in colour with a Canon T90 35mm SLR camera. The images have been converted to sepia to give them a feel of the 1940s. This selection of images also includes two of my all time favourite images - from those I have taken of the Pickering Wartime Weekend over the years.

Do let us know if you recognise yourself in the images, tell us what you are doing nowadays and if you still attend the Wartime Weekend events. You can contact us here: Contact Us

High fashion of the day, these glamorous ladies, depicting 1940s fashion worn by middle class women of the period An Air Raid Warden also known as the ARP or Air Raid Police is pictured in full uniform, with his white helmet, blowing his whistle during an air raid re-enactment.  Pickering Wartime Weekend 2001.
Child evacuees are escorted by their parents and the 1940's Police.  Heading toward Pickering Railway Station in preparation for their journey.  Pictured here marching past the HSBC Bank - bottom of Market Place.  Pickering Wartime Weekend 2001. A Winston Churchill impersonator.  Pickering Wartime Weekend 2001.

1940's WWII Evacuee children are pictured here posing in their costumes at the assembly point.  Pickering Wartime Weekend 2001. WWII Evacuee children pictured waving goodbye from a train, with a 1940's Policeman standing in the open door.  Pickering Wartime Weekend 2001. A small boy is pictured looking through an open train window complete with flat cap, indicative of the World War II period.  Pickering Wartime Weekend 2001. Fire-fighters are pictured on the scene with their buckets of water, stirrup pumps and sand.

A woman pictured playing the part of the loving mother seeing off her evacuated children during World War II, with tears in her eyes.  Pickering Wartime Weekend 2001. A 1940's nurse, with a young evacuee girl.  Pickering Wartime Weekend 2001. A World War II British Paratrooper. A WWII American Army Jeep.

WWII motorbike outriders are pictured providing an armed escort to Queen Wilhelmina of the Netherlands as her limousine drives up Smiddy Hill and down through the Market Place to the Railway Station.


2010 Wartime Weekend pictures were First Published: 18 Oct: 2010. All photos by: Dave Roberts

2006 Wartime Weekend pictures were First Published: 14 & 15 Oct: 2006. All photos by: Dave Roberts

2001 Wartime Weekend pictures were First Published: 22 Oct: 2001. All photos by: Dave Roberts





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