The 75th anniversary of Victory over Japan Day will be marked in Jersey on Saturday 15 August 2020. Supported by the Royal British Legion, it will be the first civic event to take place in the Island since exiting ‘Stay at Home’ conditions.
Victory over Japan Day (VJ Day) is the day on which Imperial Japan surrendered in the Second World War, which in effect, brought the war to an end. This happened in the days following the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. VJ Day differs from VE Day (Victory in Europe Day, which is marked on 8 May), as the war in the Pacific lasted longer than the war in Europe.
His Excellency The Lieutenant Governor Air Chief Marshal Sir Stephen Dalton GCB; The Bailiff, Mr Timothy Le Cocq; Senator Lyndon Farnham; Procureur du Bien Public for St. Helier, Peter Pearce; veterans; and representatives from the Royal British Legion, will pay tribute during a short ceremony to the tens of thousands of service personnel from across the Commonwealth who fought and died in the war against Japan, including prisoners of war.
The ceremony will begin at 10.56am with a reading of Laurence Binyon’s ‘For the Fallen’ and the sounding of the ‘Last Post’, before a two-minute silence at 11am. At 11.02am, ‘Reveille’ – a call associated with the military to alert them for assembly – will be played. Wreaths will then be laid by His Excellency The Lieutenant Governor Air Chief Marshal Sir Stephen Dalton GCB; The Bailiff, Mr Timothy Le Cocq; Senator Lyndon Farnham; Procureur du Bien Public for St. Helier, Peter Pearce; and representatives from the Royal British legion. Finally, The Dean of Jersey, The Very Reverend Mike Keirle will bless the commemoration.
The Bailiff, Mr Timothy Le Cocq, says, “COVID-19 has unfortunately restricted Jersey’s ability to hold a number of civic ceremonies to mark major anniversaries. We have commemorated ANZAC day, Liberation Day and D-Day over the last few months under very strict conditions.
“This Saturday marks the first in a series of controlled events for the remainder of 2020. This short ceremony will mark Victory over Japan Day. There were several Islanders who served in the far east, and therefore it is important that we mark this day in-line with the national ceremony at the National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire on 15 August.
“Separately we will remember those officers and servicemen who returned to Britain as the Forgotten Army in September.
“I believe it is vital that we continue to mark these special days. However, we have a responsibility to all Islanders to ensure we do so sensibly, and do not draw together public gatherings with the remaining coronavirus risks.”
While the public cannot attend the event in Jersey due to current public health guidelines in relation to COVID-19, the anniversary will be marked extensively in the UK and Islanders can follow events on TV, radio and online.
Bailiffs Chambers Press Release.