Stoke Bruerne goes to war again

DUST off your gas masks, dig out those ration books and prepare to be transported back in time at Stoke Bruerne’s Village at War Weekend.

Set on the picturesque Grand Union Canal, Stoke Bruerne’s 12th award-winning popular ’40s re-enactment weekend will have you jiving and lindy hopping to the sounds of eight vintage entertainers or diving for cover in the air raid shelter at the rear of the Canal Museum.

It all happens over the weekend of September 7 and 8, when a huge cast of Forties re-enactors and promenaders will be invading the tiny canal village and Churchill, Field Marshall Montgomery and Bomber Harris will be kept busy inspecting the troops and delivering rousing speeches.

As well as tea dances at the village hall and vintage fashion parades at the church, the school will be transformed into a ‘nippy’ tea room and fields around the village centre will be filled with black markets, memorabilia, military and vintage vehicles and displays. There will also be firepower displays and battle re-enactments.

On Sunday, weather permitting, there will be a Spitfire or Hurricane in the skies and on the water a number of historic boats, some in wartime livery, many of whom played important roles carrying vital supplies for the war effort, will complete the busy scene. 

On the Friday night for those arriving early, there will be Forties sing-alongs in the local hostelries, and on Saturday evening for those staying on site, a swing dance at the village hall.

Weekend passes are £10 (accompanied children under 16 free) and include parking and free entry to the Canal Museum with its special Canals at War exhibition.

All surplus proceeds go to organisers the Friends of the Canal Museum. For further information see