OK, so I guess you would have to have been walking around me with your fingers in your ears going LALALALALALA at the top of your voice not to know that I have baked for the wonderful Dame Vera Lynn.
I have been dining out on the fact that I baked Dame Vera’s 95th Birthday cake for 5yrs now but, at long last, that pride has been surpassed…
On Saturday, I made Dame Vera Lynn’s 100th Birthday cake and I could not be prouder.
In shades of silver, with soft silver Cake Lace and sparkling silver sugar roses, this three tiered cake was displayed and served in the Variety Bar at The London Palladium. The hungry cast of the show celebrating Dame Vera’s Birthday seemed grateful for something sweet after all of their hard work.
The 100 artwork featured images of Dame Vera and was the inspiration for the design.
Sadly, Dame Vera was unable to attend the party though she would have loved every minute. Because I knew that her actual Birthday was not until today, I had gone prepared with an extra cake to be taken home and enjoyed! I’m such a feeder that I generally over cater anyway!
This was me, all dolled up in my new dress from The House of Foxy (my go-to retro brand for special occasion wear) and posing in my living room. Notice the rather appropriate Lancaster artwork in the background!
All throughout this weekend, I couldn’t help but remember a question that I was asked at The Cake & Bake Show in Manchester back in November; I was being quizzed by a delightful 7yr old baking enthusiast who asked me who was the most famous person that I had baked for. Of course, Dame Vera came straight to mind but I was faced with the complication of explaining her significance to a young girl – not wanting to scar someone’s child with stories of a war! I pulled up this picture on my phone.
And this is what I said: Years ago, there was a war and people were all very frightened and scared. This lady sang songs that made people feel happy and gave them hope that everything was going to be alright. She is very special and very loved because she gave the people strength through her singing.
It’s a simplified message but every word is true. On a personal note, I love Dame Vera’s whole attitude towards danger during the war – she hated being stuck in shelters so would drive herself home (famously in her Austin 10) during air raids wearing her tin helmet.
She performed on the front line in Burma, not fearing the danger there any more than the danger in London but knowing that she could do some good where no other performers were visiting. Stories of the war are littered with tales of great bravery but Dame Vera shows that bravery is not only in picking up a gun. Her contribution to the war effort, her voice broadcast to troops the world over, cannot be underestimated.
Thank you, Dame Vera Lynn for being the voice of an incredible generation and Happy 100th Birthday!