Can you shed light on the date behind the pictures?

Was this really VE Day on the steps of the Guildhall?
Was this really VE Day on the steps of the Guildhall?
jpns-19-08-17 retro Aug 2017

Wedding - Sgt Brian Brown and his wife Shirley on their wedding day

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Marj Bryant is hoping readers can put a definitive date on the main picture here.

They were both left by her grandfather and on the back of the Save for Victory photograph is written ‘VE Day’.

Does the daylight glimpsed here mean the date is correct?

Does the daylight glimpsed here mean the date is correct?

But Marj thinks that might be wrong because Portsmouth Guildhall looks remarkably intact.

Only its shell remained after it was destroyed by incendiary bombs in January 1941.

The other clue that it might not be VE Day – the occasion in May 1945 marking the end of the Second World War in Europe – is the slogan on the circular board on the Guildhall steps: Save at all Times to Bring Back the Chimes.

The ringing of all bells was banned during the war. They would only be rung to warn of a German invasion. They rang again for the first time on VE Day which would have made this sign pointless.

The other clue is that everyone looks so miserable and sombre, not the look of a population freed from nearly six years of war.

As you can see, the second picture is ascribed to VJ Day in August 1945 and Marj thinks that might be correct because daylight can be glimpsed behind the columns where the Guildhall’s roof might have been. Her grandfather was Herbert Thomas Clifton, a city councillor for Cosham for 14 years in the 1930s and 1940s,