VIDEO STORY: Ayscoughfee 1940’s Weekend in Spalding gets off to a fantastic start

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The roaring 40s have come alive at Spalding’s Ayscoughfee Hall with a truly unmissable look at life in the military and on the home front.

Military and domestic vehicles from a bygone age, including Jeeps, a BBC outside broadcast unit and a bright blue Austin 8, are among the many static attractions in the grounds at Ayscoughfee.

An Austin 8 at Ayscoughfee's 1940s Weekend.

An Austin 8 at Ayscoughfee's 1940s Weekend.

There’s live music with singers performing some of the best-loved songs from the era.

There are military reenactions and activities for all of the family.

Some of the visitors have dressed in 40s fashions to add an extra dash of authenticity to the Ayscoughfee 1940s Weekend, which is on until 4pm today and again from 10.30am-4pm tomorrow.

Big treats are in store for aircraft fans as there will be flypasts by some of the famous planes from the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight this afternoon and tomorrow afternoon.

Black Watch brothers Patrick, Gavin and Francesco Ardito.

Black Watch brothers Patrick, Gavin and Francesco Ardito.

One of the policemen on duty is perhaps best known as part-time park attendant Jeffrey Drakard, who has entered into the spirit of the event by donning period dress.

Jeffrey says he is very proud of his role at Ayscoughfee, perhaps Spalding’s most famous feature, and he was keen to be a part of the 40s weekend.

He looks every inch a policeman and put his uniform together with bargain buys here and there, including a fabulous jacket from eBay.

“I thought almost everybody was going to come along as a soldier or a serviceman,” he said. “But really this weekend isn’t all about the war – it’s about life in the 1940s and every village had a bobby back then.”

Lincolns branch chairman Ken Willows (second left) with the Charman family, Michael, Karen and Bill.

Lincolns branch chairman Ken Willows (second left) with the Charman family, Michael, Karen and Bill.

Jeffrey was born and brought up in Gedney Hill and says he can recall the village bobby being there.

“I believe it was a PC Brown,” he said.

Jeffrey was joined on duty at Ayscoughfee by two of Spalding’s PCSOs, Zara Nacheva and Tracey Abbott.

Ken Willows, who chairs Spalding branch of the Royal Lincolnshire Regimental Association, was in uniform when he met up with the Charman family, who brought military equipment including a 1944 Bedford MW lorry from 1944, which carries the markings of the 4th Battalion the Lincolnshire Regiment.

A BBC outside broadcast unit and Red Cross vehicle outside Ayscoughfee Hall.

A BBC outside broadcast unit and Red Cross vehicle outside Ayscoughfee Hall.

Serving soldier Michael Charman, a veteran of Iraq and Afghanistan, together with his dad, Bill, and mum, Karen, were recreating a Second World War dressing station for treating injured soldiers in Burma.

The family, from Gainsborough, have been travelling to 40s and Second World War military events for the last seven years.

Although she can’t drive, the Bedford lorry is Karen’s ... and it was bought because she wanted somewhere comfortable and dry to sleep overnight in preference to a tent.

Among the visitors were three brothers, Patrick, Gavin and Francesco Ardito, who wore Black Watch uniforms. They say their Italian dad was a prisoner of war in Britain.

• Admission to the 40s weekend is free.

Tomorrow’s event includes the annual VJ Day Remembrance Parade from 2.30pm in the Peace Garden.

Park attendant turned bobby - Jeffrey Drakard.

Park attendant turned bobby - Jeffrey Drakard.

PCSO Zara Nacheva, 40s bobby Jeffrey Drakard and PCSO Tracey Abbott on duty at Ayscoughfee.

PCSO Zara Nacheva, 40s bobby Jeffrey Drakard and PCSO Tracey Abbott on duty at Ayscoughfee.

Serving soldier Michael Charman demonstrates a field dressing station gun.

Serving soldier Michael Charman demonstrates a field dressing station gun.