Sheffield museum relives wartime Home Front

Retro: scenes from World War Two event at Kelham Island Museum in 2013. George Formby entertainer PEC Esquire
Retro: scenes from World War Two event at Kelham Island Museum in 2013. George Formby entertainer PEC Esquire
Share this article
Have your say

Sheffielders can relive the spirit of the 1940s Home Front next weekend with World War Two-themed demonstrations and celebrations at Kelham Island Museum.

There will be a street party atmosphere at the Sheffield museum on Saturday and Sunday as performers in period costume recreate the sights and sounds of life during the war.

Visitors can view military vehicles and vintage stalls, listen to wartime stories and enjoy 1940s music performances.

“Hundreds of people are expected to come along to the event, which is now in its fifth year,” said Rachel Walker, events and marketing assistant at Sheffield Industrial Museums Trust.

“It is such a joy to see so many people dressing in good old 1940 style and joining in the singing, dancing and more upbeat side of life during the period.

“We have such a varied mix of Home Front enthusiasts, performers and wartime exhibits, the event really does bring the 40s back to life. Especially listening to old favourites like PEC Esquire, Great Britain’s top George Formby lookalike entertainer, bringing the legendary performer back into our hearts.”

Families and enthusiasts are encouraged to dress up in their 1940s best to wander the bunting-lined cobbled streets and viewing the wide range of antique, vintage and craft stalls. You might even spot Churchill or Montgomery wander around!

Visitors can experience a re-enactment of an air raid with ARP and National Fire Service responses and watch military canoe demonstrations on the River Don from Cockleshell Heroes.

On Saturday South Yorkshire Transport Museum (SYTM) will be running industrial history bus tours, starting out from the museum, and on Sunday will bring their road show bus complete with upstairs cinema charting transport history in South Yorkshire.

Other demonstrations are being put on by the Allied 39-45 Group, who depict the first independent Polish parachute brigade, the 82nd Airborne and the US 29th Infantry, Homefires Burningand UK Homefront re-enactment groups.

On Sunday afternoon a wartime tea dance will take place, accompanied by performances by DJ Major Swing and Kitty, with dance lessons for those a little less hot-footed.

Retro Club readers can get into the tea dance free, saving £2, if they show their membership card.

On Sunday there will be a display of classic cars

The Little Mesters Cafe will be serving 1940s-themed food and take-out fish and chips.

Pontefract Home Guard will be manning the gates to welcome the public.

Event tickets can be purchased on the day and cost £5 for adults with children under 16 free.

The event runs from 11am to 5pm each day.

For more information, call Kelham Island Museum on 0114 272 2106 or email Further details can also be found on