As we commemorate 75 years since Victory in Europe, mark the occasion by learning more about York’s wartime experience.

An insight into the York war effort

The Yorkshire Air Museum

The Yorkshire Air Museum boasts one of just three surviving Handley Page Halifax Bombers in the world. These workhorses of the war effort flew out from RAF Elvington, just outside York, often at night. It must have been a terrifying experience and hundreds of Halifax Bombers never made it back. You can see the conditions that the crew would have had to endure on a flight by taking a look at the 360VR experience on the museum’s website. You can see up close the bomb aimer and navigation position, the cockpit and engineer’s position, and the mid gunner and central area.

York Army Museum

The York Army Museum is home to the important regimental collections of the Royal Dragoon Guards and the Yorkshire Regiment. While the museum is closed, you can continue to explore their collections by taking a stroll through it virtually. The regiments’ experiences of the Second World War were truly global as they were involved in campaigns across Europe, Africa, Asia and the Middle East. The actions of these remarkable soldiers helped make VE Day a reality.

Eden Camp

Eden Camp gives you the sights, sounds and smells of the Second World War, all set in the grounds and builiding of a genuine WWII prisoner of war camp. While you can't visit right now, you can get a sample of their exhibits by going round the huts on their website, getting historical snippets about the wartime experience both on the frontline and the home front. 

National Railway Museum

The National Railway Museum and LNER have been working in partnership to share stories about how the railways helped with the war effort. Look out for their video on the LNER Twitter and Facebook social media feeds.

Go back in time and celebrate like it's 8 May 1945

English Heritage - VE Day Party Pack

To help you make the most of your VE at home celebrations English Heritage have put together a handy info pack to inspire you. Covering everything from popular 1940s song lyrics, recipes for tasty 1940s dishes to cook up on the day and a 40s themed Spotify playlist to help you dance away the day. On VE Day don’t forget to check out the English Heritage Facebook feed where they’ll be showcasing a Lindy Hop dance tutorial (12pm), a Lindy Hop dance troupe and band (5pm) and a national toast (3pm).

York Gin - VE Day special 

 As the early evening approaches continue the VE Day celebrations with York Gin, who will be hosting a 1940s Night In. Packed full of ideas on how to make your own wartime cocktails, musical performances with sounds of the 40s, a special wartime and gin inspired quiz and an opportunity to toast to heroes both past and present. The event is free with a voluntary donation to help the heroes at York’s St Leonard’s Hospice. Register your place now.


If you’re still hungry for more virtual experiences you must check out the #YorkatHome page which is packed full of ways to experience the city online from the comfort of your own home. Follow our Social Media channels for more inspirational content and sign up to our newsletter for the latest information on visiting once the current situation is over.