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Sandwich Salutes the 40s is a new three-day event to be held this weekend

By Eleanor Perkins

Air raid sirens and the sound of gunfire will echo through Sandwich this weekend as the town hosts a new three-day event.

Sandwich Salutes the 40s will run from Saturday, April 29 to Monday, May 1.

The event is organised by the Sandwich Rotary Club and the P22 Trust with support from Sandwich Community Events Association (SCEA).

The Gunboat P22 will visit Sandwich during the weekend
The Gunboat P22 will visit Sandwich during the weekend

Part of the entertainment will see a P22 Gunship manned by a crew of six and armoured with three 50 calibre browning machine guns moored on the River Stour.

It will be the centrepiece in a re-enactment featuring more than 200 people including the Desert Rats, RAF, Red Cross Nurses, Military Police, Home Guard, Land Army Girls and number 4 Commando Group.

Steve Laslett from SCEA said: “The re-enactors will bring to life scenes including rescuing downed airmen from the sea and stretchering the wounded to field hospitals.

“Air raid sirens and the sound of gunfire will add to the feel of authentic Second World War atmosphere.”

It is anticipated Sandwich shops, businesses and groups will take part and will dress in 1940s style. Some shops have already decorated their windows to fit the theme.

Lindy hoppers will be at the event
Lindy hoppers will be at the event

There will also be a procession each day through Sandwich to the Guildhall and back.

Other entertainment over the weekend includes a concert by the Railway Swing Band in St Mary’s Art Centre on Saturday evening.

The Medway Lindy hoppers will sing and dance in No Name Street on Sunday, from noon to 4pm.

A free park and ride service will operate from Discovery Park, just by the visitor centre.

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