I am sitting in my garden with an early morning cuppa the day after VE Day celebrations 2020. A very poignant day which marked 75 years since VE Day and the allied victory in Europe in 19454. It should have been a national day to to come together and celebrate as a nation and a weekend of commemorative events . Street parties and bunting galore 🇬🇧🇬🇧
Due to coronavirus , we all stayed at home or had drinks with our neighbours - socially distancing. We watched Winston Churchill and the jubilant celebrations throughout the UK all those years ago , and although we were not able to go out and see the people that we love , we felt so grateful for the things that we have in our lives . The simple things. And we watched our Queen in her address to the nation in what must have been a very poignant moment for her too as her father made a speech at exactly the same time 75 years ago. She spoke of the people who gave everything so that we can have our freedom today and said that they would be proud of the nation now as it rallies together in very uncertain times.
Once we come out of the other side of the coronavirus pandemic we should be mindful of the things that we do. There has never been a better time to think about the things that we buy. And never a better time to Buy British ! Let's put something back into our country's great manufacturing history and create more jobs at home. Support our country as we enter the challenging days of the recession ahead.
And yesterday has also made me think about the things that make our country great - and the things that we all love about Britain.
The bright red post boxes are part of the landscape of Britain and the wonderful Royal Mail which is keeping things going for us all at the moment. There is one blue post box at Windsor Castle near the site of the old Windsor post office , and it commemorates the first UK airmail service.
THE NATIONAL TRUST
The National Trust protects Britain's glorious buildings, landscapes and coastlines and look after the places we love. They are part of our Britih heritage and a great cause to support and have enjoyment for the whole family .
Visiting our local pub for a drink with the neighbours and friends , or popping in to one for a pub lunch or dinner is part of the fabric of British life. A pub, or public house is an establishment licensed to serve alcoholic drinks for consumption on the premises. The term public house first appeared in the late 17th century, and was used to differentiate private houses from those which were, quite literally, open to the public as 'alehouses', 'taverns' and 'inns'.
We live close to Stratford Avon and love visiting this historic riverside town which is the birthplace of William Shakespeare our famous playwright . And you can see his plays and other great entertainment at The Globe in Stratford . You can visit Anne Hathaway's cottage where she was courted by Shakespeare , and admire the Tudor buildings which are part of our heritage.
FEEDING THE DUCKS
Part of the ritual of growing up and making childhood memories here and a great family favourite
This great British tradition Afternoon tea was introduced in England by Anna, the seventh Duchess of Bedford, in the year 1840. The Duchess would become hungry around four o'clock in the afternoon. The evening meal in her household was served fashionably late at eight o'clock, thus leaving a long period of time between lunch and dinner. These days it has become very popular indeed and our family love them !
Our British way of life flows through traditional events throughout the seasons . We love Harvest festival and spring fairs on the calendar . In the UK the harvest festival, also known as the harvest home, is traditionally celebrated on the Sunday nearest the harvest moon. We love to visit Daylesford Farm in the Cotswolds for their harvest fair.
BRITISH PHONE BOXES
The red telephone box, a telephone kiosk for a public telephone designed by Sir Giles Gilbert Scott is a familiar sight on the streets of the UK , Malta , Gibraltar and Bermuda.
Despite a reduction in their numbers in recent years, the traditional British red telephone kiosk can still be seen in many places throughout the UK, and in current or former British colonies around the world. The colour red was chosen to make them easy to spot.
We love to explore and enjoy using the many footpaths around our home , or places that we go and visit . England and Wales has 180,000 miles of public rights of way in its network and Britain has 91,000 miles of footpaths, 20,000 miles of bridleways, 2,300 miles of byways and 3,700 miles of restricted byways.Check out our British footpaths network or on ordnance survey to plan future adventures together
REGENCY SPA TOWNS
We live close to Leamington Spa , a gorgeous regency spa town. You can read a little more about it here on our Hettie blog .
A spa town is a resort town based on a mineral spa (a developed mineral spring ) Patrons visit spas to "take the waters" for their purported health benefits. You can visit the pump rooms in towns such as Leamington Cheltenham , Bath and Harrogate in the UK.
HERITAGE AND HISTORY
We have a wealth of heritage and history in Britain , and such of it is well preserved for us to visit. Wandering around ruins of castles and abbeys is also a great pastime and wonderful to learn of the long history of our country. History matters . This photo is of Tintern Abbey on the river Wye in Wales
THE BRITISH PRESS
Love them , or hate them they are a big part of British life ! And we at Hettie have been fortunate to have been featured in some of the bigger newspapers . Check them out here
Yesterday on VE Day 2020 our country was able to come together and watch our history thanks to the BBC The British Broadcasting Company, as the BBC was originally called, was formed on 18 October 1922 by a group of leading wireless manufacturers including Marconi.
Watching the news on TV has been a lifeline for many people throughout these strange days and a way of staying in touch . We sat in our garden yetersday afternoon and watched a special broadcast on my iPad with the BBC.
The Uk automotive industry is a vital part of the UK economy and we have some wonderful iconic car brands . Our family are Land Rover and Mini lovers :-)
WE ARE A NATION OF DOG LOVERS
Britain was the first country in the world to start a welfare charity for animals, as early as 1824. Now, almost 20m cats and dogs have a loving place in the country's homes, and almost one in two households is accompanied by a furry, scaly, or feathered friend
For a few decades in the 19th century British manufactured goods dominated world trade. Most mass manufactured items were produced more efficiently and competitively in Britain than elsewhere. She also had the commercial, financial and political power to edge out rivals at home and abroad. In some industries, most notably textiles, massive changes took place in technology and in the organisation of production causing dramatic productivity growth. This in turn brought a steep decline in prices. In many other sectors more modest organisational improvements coupled with greater specialisation and the employment of cheap labour brought similar, though less dramatic, results. An unprecedented range and variety of products thus came within the grasp of a new mass market both within Britain and overseas. No other country could at first compete so Britain became the workshop of the world.
It would be wonderful for us to take this top spot again !
We love visiting London which is an hours train journey from our house. A wonderful day out or weekend away to immerse ourselves in this fantastic and vibrant city.
London, the capital of England and the United Kingdom, is a 21st-century city with history stretching back to Roman times. At its centre stand the imposing Houses of Parliament, the iconic ‘Big Ben’ clock tower and Westminster Abbey, site of British monarch coronations. Across the Thames River, the London Eye observation wheel provides panoramic views of the South Bank cultural complex, and the entire city.
THE GREAT BRITISH COUNTRYSIDE
The countryside holds a special place at the heart of English life and culture. And the countryside remains for most people in Britain an idyllic place, a place where we can live and relax. And we have such a beautiful and varied countryside around us all to visit.
Making a list like this makes you realise how wonderful Britain is. Let us all support each other once we come out of this coronavirus pandemic and keep the Best Of British alive and well. It was really difficult not to keep going thinking of all of the wonderful things we have here in Britain. It would be great to hear your suggestions too in the comments below !
Stay safe and well everyone