Visitors to the ‘Meet the People of the Past’ event at Victoria Park, Barry on Sunday March 27th 2012 had the opportunity to literally get a taste of wartime Barry by sampling ‘Vinegar cake’, made from a wartime recipe.
With eggs in short supply and rationed, wartime households needed to find ways to cook without them, so vinegar and bicarbonate of soda was used instead. Many visitors to the event reminisced about other ways that they overcame the food shortages.
Wartime Veterans also reminisced about the many period weapons on display and much was learned from them by the other visitors and living historians alike.
Visitors had the opportunity to learn about wartime Barry from a range living historians portraying the roles of American ‘GIs’, British ‘Tommy’ soldier, a wartime Policeman, the Women’s Voluntary Reserve, the Home Guard and even a Home Guard ‘Auxiliary’, who would have formed the British Resistance had the Nazis successfully invaded Britain in 1940.
Organiser and Chair of the Vale Heritage Centre Coalition, Ade Pitman said; “Once again the ‘Meet the People of the past’ event proved popular, with visitors ranging in age from school children, to those who lived through wartime Barry.
It was great to see the interest shown by the school children, who enthusiastically told everyone that they were learning about ‘the war’ at school. This is credit to the teachers of the area, who have clearly inspired the next generation of historians.
The ‘Snapshots of Barry during the Second World War’ series exhibitions that Barry at War Group hold at Victoria Park, and other events held by historical groups in the town highlight the need for a Heritage Centre to be established in the town as part of it’s regeneration.”
Ade continued; “Our next event will be on a far larger scale, as we take the Barry Tourist Railway back to the 40s for the Wartime Weekend, on June 16th-17th .
This two day free event, which is supported by the Vale of Glamorgan and other heritage groups, will show what life was like in Barry during the wartime years. The event will feature living history camps, military vehicles and set piece displays of what would have happened around Barry during the war years.