THE 75th anniversary of VJ Day – which marked the end of the Second World War - will be commemorated in a ceremony near York Minster on Saturday.

Those who served in terrible conditions in the Far East, many of whom made the ultimate sacrifice, will be remembered when a service is staged and wreaths laid in Dean’s Park.

Amongst those attending will be some of York’s surviving Normandy veterans, with one of them, Ken Cooke, laying a wreath at the Kohima memorial.

Nick Beilby, who organises events and activities for the veterans, said they had long held the view that following VE Day, the ‘lads in the Far East’ had been forgotten about as they continued fighting the war against the Japanese in horrendous conditions.

“Ken Cooke is particularly vocal about this,” he said. “We therefore determined that this year, the three remaining veterans would walk through the City on VJ Day and lay a wreath on the Kohima Memorial.

“This would be even more poignant following the loss of Ken Smith in April. We were then told two weeks ago that the Royal British Legion in conjunction with York Minster were organising a service in Deans Park, which we are delighted to attend.”

A Minster spokeswoman said she was still waiting for a full Order of Service and an understanding of the numbers that would be allowed into the service.

“I understand that there will be a cordon around the area where the service is being held to keep members of the public at an appropriate distance,” she added.

Meanwhile, fundraising hero Captain Sir Tom Moore has called on the nation to “stop, think and be thankful” on VJ Day.

The 100-year-old, who was recently knighted by the Queen for raising almost £33 million for the NHS, said: “It was VJ Day when the pain of war could finally start to fall away as peace was declared on all fronts.

“I respectfully ask Britain to stop whatever it is doing and take some time to remember.

“We must all take the time to stop, think and be thankful that were it not for the ultimate sacrifices made all those years ago by such a brave band of men and women, we would not be enjoying the freedoms we have today, even in these current difficult times.”