The wartime scrapbook of Mrs Betty Porter will be on display in the gallery of the Northern Ireland War Memorial throughout its commemoration of VJ Day. This scrapbook allows its readers to see VJ Day through the eyes of a young girl who witnessed the end of war celebrations in Ulster first-hand. A replica will be available to handle.
The Scrapbook includes newspaper clippings and images of Japanese Prisoners Of War being released on VJ Day, and soldiers returning to their families. In one newspaper clipping entitled ‘World at Peace’ Clement Attlee makes the statement that the Japanese have surrendered, proclaiming peace at 12pm on Tuesday 14th August 1945.
In a handwritten note Betty Porter writes about her personal experience of VJ Day:
‘VJ day was greeted with flags, and happy holiday makers. Once again two days holidays were granted. On VJ Day the fellowship went to Castle Espie on Strangford Lough. We had a lovely day. Home in time for the King’s broadcast, and then we all met and went around town. We just went wild with everyone else and followed bands etc. We had a light in our garden for decoration. Once again there were bonfires, and many parties, dancing in the open air.’