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Maritime festival will hark back to First World War heroism and air raid 

10th August 2018
Anthony Carroll reports


Launch of the Great Yarmouth Maritime Festival on the Lydia Eve ship. Chairman Aileen Mobbs. Picture: Antony Kelly

Battlefield heroism and a deadly coastal air raid will be highlighted when Great Yarmouth’s Maritime Festival explores the impact of the First World War on the town

Postcard showing the historic Zeppelin air raid damage in Great Yarmouth Picture: TMS Media

Guides in the festival’s Heritage Quarter will highlight some of the bravery shown by local soldiers in the Great War, which ended 100 years ago, including the VC won by Harry Cator, Patron of Great Yarmouth Seafarers Centre, for taking out a German machine gun nest single handed

Visitors will also be signposted to the scene of one of Britain’s first ever air raids, when a Zeppelin claimed the lives of two civilians in January 1915

The Maritime Festival, at the historic South Quay on September 8 and 9, is a celebration of the town’s links with the sea but also its rich history

The Heritage Quarter marquee will also feature another landmark centenary – of the Suffragette movement

HENRY CATOR VC Steve Snelling

Henry Cator VC Picture: Steve Snelling collection

People can talk to the guides about the Suffragette movement and use a polling booth for a fun test to see if they would have been eligible to vote in 1918

The Norfolk Records Office will be on hand to give advice on tracing family history, including ancestors’ wartime roles. It will also host craft sessions to make a wall of poppies

A wartime nurse from the Time and Tide Museum will show how injured soldiers were treated. There will also be Great War objects to handle, and a chance to make a Suffragette badge

On the Sunday visitors can learn, from historical reenactor Nigel Amies, about life in the Western Front trenches through the eyes of a Norfolk Regiment soldier. They can handle objects, equipment and weapons, ?hear the soldier’s songs and poems and see cartoons depicting the war

Wartime footage from the area will be shown by the Vintage Mobile Cinema bus

Festival chairman Aileen Mobbs said: “The Maritime Festival is a feast of ships, music, crafts, family fun and all things seafaring, but we also like to celebrate Great Yarmouth’s history – and this year’s important centenaries give an added power and poignancy”

The weekend is organised by the Greater Yarmouth Tourism and Business Improvement Area as part of its drive to bring extra visitors and spending power to the borough

Find out more about the festival at

this article also appeared on the Yarmouth Mercury website and is reproduced with permission