An event that grows with popularity every year, the ‘Spirit of the 40s’ weekend returns to Explosion Museum of Naval Firepower in Gosport on the 6th and 7th April. Guaranteed dancing, activities, displays, traders, and of course an impressive array of weaponry, it will bring back memories of a momentous time in history and create some new memories of family fun days out!


In honour of this special weekend Portsmouth Historic Dockyard will also be offering a joint ticket including entry to one day of the event, plus unlimited entry for 1 year to all the fantastic attractions of the Historic Dockyard (the Mary Rose Story – closing 14th April, HMS Victory, the National Museum of the Royal Navy, HMS Warrior 1860, Action Stations and Harbour Tours) and the Explosion Museum, plus a waterbus to transport them door-to-door in true maritime fashion!


Explosion is located in the former Royal Naval Ordnance Deport at Priddy’s Hard, near Gosport, in Hampshire and with nearly two hundred re-enactors on site over the weekend, the atmospheric historic buildings will really be coming back to life.


There’s plenty to do throughout the day, with a display of military vehicles, demonstrations of 1940s life including dance displays, a 1940s Jazz Band performing throughout the day and a wartime themed café; plus, Kids’ Zone with Hands on History - including a paintball range and drop in family activities, period and vintage traders and FREE admission to Explosion’s award-winning museum galleries.


Timed demonstrations will include:

·         Finale Battle within the Ramparts, a version of ‘Operation Market Garden’ as Allied troops fight the Germans for control of Hell’s Highway! Can the Allies prevail and take command of this area or is it ‘A Bridge Too Far’?

  • Naval gunners give a dramatic demonstration of firepower using Explosion’s 4.7-inch gun.
  • Head for the shelters when the sirens sound for a 1940s air raid!
  • Be on best behaviour for the arrival of the Prime Minister, the Right Honourable Winston Churchill, MP, and his entourage.
  • Get up close to a Sexton Self Propelled Gun, a tracked vehicle from World War II which has been kindly made available by Royal Armouries, and watch demonstrations throughout the day beside the green. Take cover!

In addition to the daytime event, Explosion will also be staging their very own, separately ticketed, 1940s dance on the evening of Saturday 6th April where guest can jitterbug the night away in the eighteenth century Grand Magazine. Organisers advise that tickets for the evening event are purchased in advance to avoid disappointment. Full details on the website –


Event only tickets for ‘Spirit of the 40s’ can be purchased now at the Explosion Museum or for the great value joint ticket: at the Visitor Centre in Portsmouth Historic Dockyard and online at


Explosion Museum of Naval Firepower – 6th and 7th April 2013


Event Tickets (1 Day) Adult £12, Concession £7, Family Ticket £25


GREAT VALUE! Unlimited Entry to Portsmouth Historic Dockyard’s Attractions and Explosion! Valid For 1 Year, Plus 1 Day Entry to Spirit of the 40s and Waterbus Travel!Adult £31, Child £24.75, Concession £29.25, Family Ticket £87