The 1940s season has gotten well under way now with Crich last weekend and now GSRW Wartime in the Cotswolds.
Wartime in the Cotswolds is a light hearted look at life on a Railway in the West of England during the Battle of Britain in 1940s.
There was plenty going on at the various stations along the line including re-enactors and entertainment in period costume as well as vintage vehicle displays, military displays, trade stands, music and dancing. At Toddington Station there was also a replica Spitfire on display.
We arrived on Saturday morning as I was to perform in the marquee alongside the Kalamazoo Dance Band and also All About Swing who were giving dance tuition over the weekend as well as DJ duties. My first set was at 10.30 am which was a relaxed jazz set to set the mood. The day was really well planned with a mix of live music from Kalamazoo, wartime sing a long and of course the dance lessons.
We were blessed with the weather and the sun shone on both days which always makes these events much more pleasurable! Saturday I wore y K & R vintage repro hat, swing trousers from HeyDay Vintage and blouse from the Seamstress of Bloomsbury.
The first day went incredibly well and it was lovely to meet up with so many friendly faces and make new friends and acquaintances. As always there were the Spivs knocking around with their black market goods ready to be collared by the local bobbies however at this event we were honoured with the presence of King George 5th , General Montgomery ‘Monty’, Prime Minister Winston Churchill and Bomber Harris.
After my performance on Saturday I managed to squeeze in a quick half an hour to wander round the trade stalls. As always Margi Morton has a great selection of original 1940s wear under her trading name of Vintage Belle; I managed to pick up a lovely brown beret however being 5ft 10 inches tall finding original vintage is always a struggle! K & R Vintage has some delightful reproduction hats but I resisted this week as I spent rather a lot the week before at Crich.
My good friend – the unique Sheila Lloyd-Graham – had her vintage hair salon set up and she was busy styling all day as well as trading in a few vintage items.
We were unable to find anywhere close by to stay having left it so late so we ended up at a delightful B & B in close to the centre of Gloucester so we took the opportunity to explore the Quays and enjoy a Mexican meal. We didn’t attend the dance which featured Kal’s Kat’s as we were shattered and needed an early night! We hear it was amazing though.
After a great nights sleep in our cosy B & B we were back to it for the Sunday. Sunday included the Service of Remembrance which wasn’t as well as attended as it should have been in my opinion but hey ho. Padre Eric delivered a moving sermon and we paid our respects.
Sunday was as busy with visitors but the atmosphere was much more chilled and they took a bit of coaxing to take part in the dance lessons.
Sunday I wore a repro dress from Rock and Romance teamed with an original 1940s suit jacket from Vintage Belle. My hair piece in the morning was from The Little Shop of Gorgeousness and Fripperies and the afternoon my hat (bought from Lady She) was made from an original 1940s Vogue pattern.
The highlight of the day was seeing the Spitfire flypast which is always spectacular and I never get bored of seeing this.
Darren and I got packed up as soon as I finished my final set as we had to get back for the children but we had time to say a few quick good byes including a very quick hello to Kitten Von Mew who was looking fabulous as always.
During the weekend I also managed to see a few copies of my CD Requiem for a Soldier in support of Upottery Airfield Heritage Trust as well as my own CD.
As always there are so many people to thank so in particular:
Mark and Donna on the organisation committee
Rob and Sarah from All About Swing as they very kindly let me plug in to their gear
Kal and everyone from Kalamazoo Dance band
All the volunteers who ensure that the Railway and the event run smoothly and without them nothing would happen.
And of course my significant other Darren who supports me beyond measure, always has a smile and a friendly word for everyone and is an all round amazing human being.
The wonderful Mark also sent me a lovely message following the event:
“Hi Jayne, Just about recovering from this amazing event!
Jayne Darling – Vintage Singer