The Hidden Music

Kent Yeomanry Christmas Card, 1940

During the withdrawal to Dunkirk in 1940, 385 battery of the Kent Yeomanry had to hurriedly evacuate from the town of Perenchies in the north east of France. The local people helped the regimental band to hide their musical instruments.

The Gestapo searched every house in the town three times,  but never found the instruments, which were hidden under a pile of gas masks.

Six years later,  after the war was over,  members of the regiment returned to Perenchies. A big celebration took place in the town hall, as the trumpets and side drums were returned.

Colonel Lushington recorded how he felt awkward at being kissed so many times by French men! The partying went on all night, “but the human frame is only standing a certain amount of pleasure or pain, and the limit of endurance is soon reached. And so with many protestations of undying friendship the men of the Kent Yeomanry said good bye to their kind hosts and steamed away….”