Return to war years at castle

FAMILIES have the chance to enjoy a taste of life during the Second World War this weekend.

Scarborough Castle is staging the Wartime Weekend between Saturday and Bank Holiday Monday.

Jon Hogan, of English Heritage which has organised the event, said: "Rationing, threat of bombings and conscription – one of the bleakest times in modern history and yet many people fondly remember the amazing spirit and sense of camaraderie of the war."

One of the highlights of the weekend will be a daily flypast by the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight which will include a Dakota bomber circling the castle at around 3.35pm on Saturday, a Spitfire flying over at 2.55pm on Sunday and a special treat on the Bank Holiday Monday when both planes will give displays at 2.50pm and 4pm.

Visitors interested in the military side of the conflict will be able to enjoy a series of battle re-enactments each day at noon and approximately 3pm with armoured soldiers of the Northern World War 2 Association and the East Yorkshire Regiment Re-enactment Society complete with gunfire and explosions.

Other activities include soldiers telling stories of their life and ARP personnel advising people what to do if their house is bombed and giving classes on dealing with explosions or unexploded bombs and "singalongs" of the day.

Mr Hogan added: "Although the war was often a time laden with grief as both soldiers and civilians lost their lives in encounters with the enemy, it was also a time of great patriotism and celebration of what made Britain proud – the distinctive sound of a Spitfire still arouses strong, patriotic emotions in people who remember their key role."

The event will run from 11am-5pm each day, with "living history displays" throughout the castle's opening hours of 10am-6pm.

The wartime theme will continue throughout the half-term holiday as young visitors are invited to join the Time Travellers at their Spy School inside the Big Top.

Further details and prices for the events are available by contacting (01723) 372451 or via the website at