THE sound of gunfire echoed around Mapledurham as the village hosted a Second World War battle re-enactment and displays
THE sound of gunfire echoed around Mapledurham as the village hosted a Second World War battle re-enactment and displays.
About 2,000 visitors attended the third annual event in the grounds of Mapledurham House on Saturday and Sunday.
More than 500 re-enactment enthusiasts were involved, taking the parts of British, American, German, Polish and Russian troops. They wore uniforms and had props and kit to make the action realistic. One display involved German soldiers storming the watermill on the estate and taking British soldiers hostage.
The watermill was restored with money from the makers of 1976 film The Eagle Has Landed, which was partly shot at the estate.
Tanks, motorcycles, armoured vehicles were on display. A duck boat was used to demonstrate a beach landing. There were daily talks on topics including how to use a bayonette, preserving food, firing a mortar, rationing and living through the Blitz.
Each day finished with a mock battle with the Allies winning on one day and the Germans on the other. The amateur actors fired blanks.
Dave Allaway, part of the Screaming Eagles Living History Group, said: ?Everyone here brought their own equipment. All the vehicles, guns and ammunition are privately owned but it?s all part of a great Second World War experience. It?s an expensive hobby but people really like it.
?In the evenings we had a Forties dance in the marquee with a bar and a party.?