9th October 2011 – Press Release

At long last, all can be revealed!

Levisham Station, 8 miles north of Pickering, will be ‘occupied’ by the Germans during the North York Moors Railway’s (NYMR) ‘Wartime Weekend’ to become the October 1943 French village of ‘Le Visham’ in northern France. Part of this year’s public edutainment package will be:
• a demonstration of a full-size replica of a German V1 flying bomb or ‘buzz bomb’ with its rocket engine simulator which will be fired up hourly.
• The V1’s engine simulator will produce a similar sound and flame effect as the original.
• The V1 will be placed on a replica WW2 launch ramp and re-enactor scientists and technicians will explain the missile system to the public.
• A unique edutainment re-enactment portrayal of the dreaded V1 that has never before been carried out.
• The V1 display will be repeated hourly to coincide with train arrival times at ‘Le Visham’.
‘Le Visham’ station will be decorated with period posters, French signs and tactical German signs. NYMR trains will run as normal throughout the weekend.
German military police and female auxiliaries will check the IDs of the public, and there will be WW2 first aid and military kit displays and demonstrations, as well as WW2 vehicles both military and civilian.
The north-bound platform will display a radio room which will include an original German code-making ‘ENIGMA’ machine. Fully staffed and run as a radio room, authentic period radio traffic and sound effects will be heard.
Last year the ‘Germans at Levisham’ attracted over twelve thousand visitors to Levisham Station to enjoy being part of the ‘Allo Allo’-style light-hearted and fun mood at ‘Le Visham’. A WW2 French ‘Cafe Allé du Bois’ will serve food and drinks to visitors of a typically French flavour, replete with 40’s waitresses, staff, and an accordion player and other entertainment to support the 1940’s theme and mood. This area of the event includes trade stalls too.
Notes for editors
1. The re-enactors have many TV and film appearances to their credit such as ‘Band of Brothers’, Saving Private Ryan’, National Geographic and UK History channels, ‘Battlefield Detectives’ and ‘Resistance’ which premiered at UK cinemas last month.
2. The aim and ethos of the ‘Occupation of Le Visham 1943’ is education and entertainment, to provide a fun learning and enjoyable day out for the public, the majority of whom dress in 1940’s clothing, including families and children. Visiting public who are in 1940’s attire gives them a more enjoyable experience and a strong feeling of being part of the ‘show’ themselves.
3. Fun and humour is highlighted by, for example, the German Military Police stonily accosting visitors, showing them a ‘wanted’ poster, demanding to know whether they ‘have seen this man?’ The photo is of someone modern whose being ‘wanted’ provokes laughter, such as a prominent current politician or other famous or infamous in-the-news ‘celeb’.
4. Every year we get WW2 veterans at ‘Le Visham’ throughout the weekend and invariably enjoy their visit.
5. NYMR staff and specified re-enactors will ensure public safety throughout, in accordance with routine NYMR safety protocols.

Leave a Reply

Latest News
Join Facebook

Click above to see our Wiki Entry