YEP Says, May 8: Remembering the price of victory seven decades on

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ON this day 70 years ago, Britain shook off its natural reserve. A mass outbreak of singing, dancing – and, in some instances, the kissing of perfect strangers – were among the more sensational sights and sounds of a party the like of which had never before been witnessed on these shores.

ON this day 70 years ago, Britain shook off its natural reserve. A mass outbreak of singing, dancing – and, in some instances, the kissing of perfect strangers – were among the more sensational sights and sounds of a party the like of which had never before been witnessed on these shores.

The participants – and that was just about the entire population, including Princesses Elizabeth and Margaret – had good reason for their revelries. After six long, brutal years of warfare, the guns had finally fallen silent across Europe.

In Leeds, as across the whole nation, Victory in Europe Day saw friends, families and communities join together to celebrate Nazi Germany’s unconditional surrender.

It should never be understimated how great a cost was paid by every man, woman and child who endured those wartime years, their pain and privations being the price of the freedom we enjoy and too often take for granted.

Today’s 70th anniversary of this momentous occasion is an opportunity to pause and pay due respect to their sacrifices.

Memories may recede and first-hand accounts be forever silenced, but the debt owed to those who fought, struggled and suffered in that noble battle against tyranny – and celebrated its hard-won triumph – will never diminish.

A run that will help save lives

THIS Sunday will see 7,000 runners pound the streets of Leeds in the city’s half marathon – and behind so many of them are amazing, heartwarming stories.

Stories like that of Moortown mum Melanie Burkinshaw, who is running to help fund research into the little-known Marfan Syndrome which affects her husband James and children Finlay and Nuala.

The life-threatening genetic condition affects 18,000 people across the UK – and Melanie’s efforts have the potential to help improve many lives.

Good luck to her and all those running to give others the hope of a better life.

PIC: Bruce Rollinson

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