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The battles of the Second World War come to Sidcup

The Royal British Legion has teamed up with a Sidcup cinema to bring the big battles of World War II to the big screen.

The Sidcup and Footscray branch of the Royal British Legion and Sidcup Partners will be hosting two screenings of blockbuster war films at the Storyteller cinema in High Street, Sidcup, on Saturday, June 29.

The event marks Armed Forces Day, and to make use of its new multi-screen cinema, Sidcup Storyteller are bringing the beginning of World War II and the battle which brought about the eventual allied victory, to the screen.

From left, Dunkirk, The Longest Day (Picture: Dunkirk 2017 WBEI / The Longest Day, 1962 Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation)

Andy Bruce, secretary of The Sidcup and Footscray branch of the Royal British Legion, said: “Saturday June 29, 2024, is Armed Forces Day, and Sidcup’s chance to show our support for the people who make up the UK’s Armed Forces community.

“From serving personnel and their families, to veterans and cadets. All proceeds from this event at the Storyteller will go to help them, and we’re so grateful to the Storyteller and Sidcup partners for their support.”

At just £5 for each film per person, the event will also see experts take to the stage to discuss the films after each screening with opportunities for audience members to ask questions.

Still from Dunkirk, which will be shown at the Sidcup Story on June 29 (Picture: Dunkirk 2017 WBEI)

Kicking off at 10am, the day’s events will start with a screening of Dunkirk.

The 2017 epic historical war thriller starring Harry Styles, Kenneth Branagh and Tom Hardy, depicts the Dunkirk evacuation of 338,000 allied soldiers from France in 1940. 

This will be followed up with a screening of The Longest Day at 1.30pm.

The  suspenseful 1962 drama shows the incredible build up to the allied invasion of Europe in 1944, starring Richard Burton, Kenneth More, John Wayne and Sean Connery. 

After each film the audience will hear from experts – which are yet to be revealed to the public – about the films and events they cover, with a chance to ask questions. 

Still from the 2017 movie, Dunkirk (Picture: Dunkirk 2017 WBEI)

Sue Petty, from Sidcup partners, said: “Sidcup had an important role in helping those injured in war. 

“Queen Mary’s Hospital was a World-renowned centre for plastic surgery for facial injuries sustained in World War I. 

“In World War II, despite being bombed, it looked after soldiers who had contracted tropical diseases serving the far East. 

“The businesses of Sidcup are delighted to support the Royal British Legion’s screenings at Sidcup’s Storyteller.”

Richard Burton in The Longest Day (Picture: The Longest Day, 1962 Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation)

Having been open for just over a year, the Sidcup Story teller features several screens, as well as a café, bar, library and co-working space.

The venue was built as part of a partnership between Bexley council and independent operators Really Local Group, on the site of a former Blockbuster Video shop, before the chain closed in 2004.

Craig Wood, general manager at the Sidcup Storyteller, said: “The Storyteller is pleased to be able to use our cinema not just to entertain but bring to life the sacrifices that so many made, including many from Sidcup and surrounding areas. 

“These films, Dunkirk and The Longest Day, are important reminders of those sacrifices. We are proud to be working with local organisations to bring this event to the people of Sidcup.”

To book seats, go to:

Pictured top: Robert Mitchum in The Longest Day (Picture: The Longest Day, 1962 Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation)

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