An evening with Russian veterans of the Second World War
7th May @ 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Russian WWII veterans in Cambridge
This year marks 75 years since the start of the Great Patriotic War in Russia on 22nd June 1945. This war brought enormous losses to the peoples of the former Soviet Union – more than 27 million people died, of which civilians comprised an overwhelming majority. Some countries lost a significant part of their population: Belarus lost more than 25% of its population, Ukraine over 16%, and Russia every 7th citizen.
As days go by, fewer and fewer witnesses of those tragic times are still with us. Their striking stories and reminiscences about the great war are a powerful source of wisdom and inspiration; their experience presents priceless examples of courage, loyalty and endurance. This evening, we have the pleasure of welcoming some participants of decisive military events on the Eastern Front, such as the Battle of Stalingrad, the Crossing of the Dniepr, Battle of Berlin, and the Arctic Convoys.
They were still in the years of tender youth when the reality of war made them go and fight for their motherland, for their homes, and their loved and close ones. With remarkable stamina and fortitude did they bear war’s perilous hardships, and yet they retained tolerance and strong faith in peace, love and understanding between all people, as the corner stone of human life and well-being.
We are delighted to invite you to meet these extraordinary people, who are visiting us here in Cambridge for the first time ever – in order to share their memories with the local community.
Scott Polar Research Institute, Lecture Theatre
Cambridge, CB2 1ER + Google Map
The Highland-Russia Connection Charity offers talks, displays, exibitions and performances. Elena ,Elizabeth and Anna Reid, Beth and Alex Garrow and Lauren Mackay have for the past a few years performed at different events and for many community groups across the Highlands and beyond. All of us have spent many hours volunteering for the community.
The Highland-Russia Connection Charity Reg No SC040352
Plus talk on 70th Victory Day celebrations in Russia
Friday 23rd October @ 8pm
26th September 2015,
The Spectrum Centre
The Highland-Russia Connection Charity will run the following at the event:
Russian trains - the world's most trusted full service travel company for Russia.
Exellent company and a first class service!
We would like to thank RussianTrains.com very much and would definitely recommend them to anyone!
Col Navolotsky was the very first veteran we met in Russia and was in the Arctic convoys and sailed to Murmansk.
As you are aware, our charity, the Highland-Russia Connection, based in Nairn, had planned a unique project for the 70th
Anniversary of Victory Day and, on 4th May 2015, we travelled to Moscow to join these celebrations and later to St Petersburg.
During the visit we performed at numerous venues for the Russian and British veterans and the general public and also
assisted at the V Day parade and at the Piskaryovskoye Memorial Cemetery.
Our Russian language skills really helped the British veterans some of whom had very restricted mobility and required some
assistance with the language when approached by local people. The British veterans were overwhelmed by the kindness of the Russian people. They said they had never been kissed so much, received so many flowers or been thanked as much as they were on V Day in St.Petersburg! However, the celebrations also revived sad memories of the losses of their comrades during the war.
The veterans and their families and carers thanked us, especially Elizabeth and Anna, for the performances of piping,
dancing and singing. These performances made a great impression on the veterans and some of them became very emotional, especially at the renderings of "Auld Lang Syne" and "Amazing Grace". The girls also performed at a V Day concert in the main square by the Hermitage Museum in St Petersburg.
We all had the most memorable and rewarding time and it was a most educational and beneficial experience for the girls.
The Russian government presented all the veterans with a 70th V Day anniversary medal and a watch before the celebrations and the Scottish veterans attended a ceremony in Edinburgh and Glasgow to receive these. Unfortunately, one of the veterans, Harold O'Neill, lost his medal in St Petersburg and our charity has been asked to contact the consulate in Edinburgh to ask for a replacement. Harold O'Neill had the distinction of being the only person who had a pass permitting him to go ashore in Murmansk.
As this was the 70th anniversary of Victory Day, the veterans are now all very advanced in years and this was a once in a lifetime
opportunity and we are proud that our charity was able to be part of such an historical celebration.
You can see some of the photographs from the trip on our charity's
Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/
If you can find some spare time please watch these short videos I made
during the visit.
We have received financial support from The Inverness Branch of The Royal Naval Association and from The Beauly and District Branch of The British Legion,RussianTrains.com and from a few individual donors. We express our sincere thanks to all those who contributed to our project.