A Fun Family Day In Thetford

Our first family fun day took place at the Ancient House Museum in Thetford on Saturday 12th April 2014.

The museum, part of Norfolk Museums Service, very kindly allowed the Eighth in the East to take over their museum for the day and nearly 100 local people came along to learn more about this special part of our local history.

It really was a fun packed day and all the children who took part learned something new about the story of the 8th USAAF in the East of England. The mashed potato truffles went down a treat and for all the children it was the first time they had ever seen a wind up record player!

The event brought together lot’s of families and young people from different backgrounds and had a real international flavour – including participants from the current U.S Air Force bases in our region.

We’re thrilled to announce that Arthur Staff was drawn as the winner in our trail competition and Kieran Richardson was chosen as the winner of our paint a flying patch competition. Well done to all those that entered – we loved every picture.

On the day children took part in a range of exciting activities, including –

  • Making a pilot’s badge
  • Meeting ‘Hank the Yank’ and the opportunity to dress up as a wartime flyer.
  • Being a budding archaeologist
  • Painting their own leather flying patch.
  • Trying out some fab war time recipes – including the popular ‘wartime’ truffles’ – made from mash potato!
  • Watching 1940’s films from the East Anglian Film Archive.

The Eighth in the East project team and partners were on hand throughout the day and we also had some interested visitors from the local airfield groups, including  . The event also featured live on BBC Radio Suffolk’s morning show and we hope through them our work will have reached a wider audience. We had some great feedback on the day – here’s just a small sample of what people were saying.

Great hands on learning experience for children

This was great. Many thanks. Great staff.

Thank you for bringing history to life!

We’d like to say a big thank you to the Ancient House Museum for sharing their home with us, the volunteers who helped make the day extra special and above all the families and children who came along. Their great enthusiasm and interest made the day a wonderful occasion for all involved. We can’t wait to do it all over again.