1940s Tea Party

Webpage designed and created by Eleanor Keay, while on work experience with MED Theatre

On Saturday 3rd of July, MED Theatre celebrated the end of our ‘Dartmoor, Devon and World War Two’ project with a fantastic fun-filled 1940s themed tea party. The event was hosted on a glorious sunny afternoon in The Sentry, Moretonhampstead. The Hummingbirds Trio delighted the audience performing songs from the era and teaching dance from the 1940s. Another hugely enjoyable part of the afternoon was the 45 minute performance of MED Theatre’s Devon’s War Girls. More information about the day can be found below.

‘Dartmoor, Devon and World War Two’ was funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund. You can find out more about the overall project on the dedicated website page. 

Devon's War Girls

Abby Stobart and Helen Gilbert gave a brilliant and moving performance in MED Theatre’s acclaimed two-woman show Devon’s War Girls. The 45 minute performance captured the audience by bringing to life local wartime stories, including harrowing tales of crashed planes on Dartmoor alongside some funny and some tear-provoking anecdotes of the legendary ‘Land-girls’ and enigmatic evacuees. 

The Hummingbirds Trio

Throughout the afternoon, visitors were entertained by three wonderful performances from The Hummingbirds Trio. These three lovely ladies gave a brilliant performance and had a large group of the public fully invested in dancing to a myriad of upbeat and energising 1940s songs. During their second performance, the Trio taught eager members of the audience some 1940s moves and consequently there was a happy bubble of gleeful dancers. There were even moments of complete unison in dance. From ages 7 to 70 all members of the public thoroughly enjoyed listening to wonderful performances of nostalgic songs. Fantastically, members of all ages joined in on the dancing front too! 

“I loved having the opportunity to  dance in public, I felt really content and had a real sense of community pride while dancing next to friendly strangers! Thank you MED and the Hummingbirds!”
– Audience member, 16 years

MEMORIES FROM OUR 1940s TEA party audience

On the 3rd of July 2021, MED Theatre hosted a 1940’s themed tea party at The Sentry in Moretonhampstead. During the course of the afternoon, visitors were invited to share memories of their war experience. Below are a few examples of these memories.

“My Dad was a Rear Gunner and did many sorties and thankfully survived.”

Shopping: “Mum didn’t queue for her shopping like other mums. For some reason she had it delivered in a van during the war- better than click and collect!

“Memories of my Grandad’s: He lived in London as a young boy during the war. On one trip to school with the other mothers and their children, they had to dive over a low garden wall as the street [that] they were on began to get gunned by an overhead aircraft.”

“I was evacuated to Moretonhampstead 1939 as a 5 year old. I have been in Moreton for 82 years. Today it brought back many memories”- Bill Field

“My great-grandmother left home at 16 [and] lied about her age [in order] to join the airforce. Her name was JOAN.”

VE Day: “Dad decided we all needed ice-cream. He cycled 3 miles to the next village and back. When he arrived with our newspaper-covered ice-cream the rest of the street joined the street party and he had to ride off again for more ice-cream! That’s devotion!


Costume Time!

For those wishing to “feel-more-40’s”, Indigo Edwards-Tooke was readily available with costumes from MED Theatre’s Wardrobe, and many enjoyed dressing up in garments of the era.

Many thanks to Indigo for being their to help with this and for keeping the activity safe and covid-friendly!