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The D-Day Landings

Discussion in 'Hitler's Atlantic Wall' started by Jim, Aug 25, 2007.

  1. Jim

    Jim New Member

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    Operation "Neptune/Overlord" were the code names for the 6 June 1 944 D-Day Landings on the Normandy coast of German-occupied France. This was the most important Allied operation of the Second World War. On that momentous day, the
    Allies launched the most ambitious opposed invasion ("amphibious assault") seen up to that time. "Neptune" was the codename given to the naval operation to transport and land the forces ashore, and "Overlord" referred to the subsequent campaign on the ground. By the end of this day, American, British, Canadian and some French forces had established a significant beachhead in France. The numbers of Allied forces committed, the preparatory work undertaken by all staff, and the bravery of thousands of ordinary service personnel transformed the monumental challenge of D-Day into one of the most successful military operations of all time. The initial success in establishing the "Second Front" locked Germany into a three-front war of attrition - in France, Italy and Russia (the Eastern Front) that would eventually overwhelm Hitler's Nazi Reich. The Initial Joint Plan produced by the Allies in February 1944 stated that they would assault the Normandy coast to secure "as a base for future operations a Lodgement Area", which within three months would extend to the Rivers Loire and Seine. To achieve this, on D-Day a vast naval armada laden with troops would cross the Channel under the cover of darkness and then, before dawn, drop anchor opposite the five designated invasion beaches: from east to west, Sword, Juno, Gold, Omaha and Utah. By then, three Allied airborne divisions would have landed to secure the flanks of the invasion.


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    Finally, after heavy aerial and naval bombardments, British and Canadian assault forces would land on Sword, Juno and Gold, while American forces assaulted Omaha and Utah. After these initial assaults had established five small beachheads, follow-up forces would land and advance inland. By the end of D-Day, the Allies hoped, their forces would have captured the towns of Caen and Bayeux, and have consolidated the four eastern beachheads and the British airborne zone into a single salient.
    To execute this plan successfully, the Allies had to undertake extensive preparations. They had to train and then assemble in southern England many dozens of divisions while deceiving the enemy into believing that their main attack would come in the Pas de Calais, not Normandy. They had to bomb the French railways to undermine German supply and reinforcement capabilities. Finally, on 12th February 1944, they established in southwest London the Supreme Headquarters, Allied Expeditionary Force (SHAEF) with General Eisenhower as its Supreme Commander.


    KEY FACTS
    SUPREME ALLIED COMMANDER
    General Dwight ("Ike") Eisenhower
    DEPUTY SUPREME ALLIED COMMANDER
    Air Chief Marshal Arthur Tedder
    NAVAL Commander-in-Chief
    Admiral Bertram Ramsay
    AIR Commander-in-Chief
    Air Chief Marshal Trafford Leigh-Mallory
    (TEMPORARY) LAND C-I N-C
    (21 st ARMY GROUP)

    General Bernard Montgomery
    CHIEF OF STAFF (SHAEF)
    General Waiter Bedell Smith
    EASTERN TASK FORCE
    Rear Admiral Philip Vian
    WESTERN TASK FORCE
    Rear Admiral Alan Kirk
    SECOND TACTICAL AIR FORCE
    Air Chief Marshal Arthur Coningham
    NINTH US AIR FORCE
    Lieutenant General Lewis Brereton
    SECOND (BRITISH) ARMY
    Lieutenant General Miles Dempsey
    FIRST US ARMY
    Lieutenant General Omar Bradley


    Invasion!

    By initiating D-Day on 6th June amid poor weather, the Allies surprised the German forces, whose slow reactions then let slip their best chance to drive the invaders back into the sea. Back on 8 May, the Allies had scheduled the landings for 5th June, when there existed the required combination of good moonlight (for the airborne drops), half-way rising tides (for avoiding beach obstacles) and plenty of daylight: the unpredictable factor remained the weather. During 2nd-3rd June, the naval bombardment groups headed south from the Scottish ports, but unfortunately on 4th June deteriorating weather forced the Allies to postpone the attack planned for 5th June by 24 hours. This decision condemned those soldiers already embarked to an unpleasant night aboard swaying transport vessels. If continuing bad weather postponed the invasion beyond 7th June, the Allies would have to wait two weeks until satisfactory conditions reoccurred, a dangerous delay given that German troops were then rapidly strengthening their defences along the French coast. During the night 4th-5th June, the storm worsened, but by then the meteorologists had predicted somewhat better weather on 6th June. Consequently, at 0400 hours British Double Summer Time (GMT plus two hours) on the 5th, the Allies bravely decided to initiate the invasion on 6th June despite the marginal weather conditions. During 5th June, 6,939 vessels from eight different navies and many merchant fleets assembled off the coast of southern England. From 2100 hours, the Western Task Force - Assault Forces Omaha and Utah, plus their respective naval bombardment groups assembled south of Hayling Island; they were soon joined by the Eastern Task Force, with Assault Forces Sword, Juno and Gold, plus their bombardment groups. As the armada headed south toward Normandy, the first Allied bombers passed overhead en route to strike the German defences. Next, from 2330 hours, 1,100 Allied transport planes travelled south across the Channel, transporting 17,000 airborne troops to Normandy.

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    From 0016 hours, the British 6th Airborne Division landed north-east of Caen to seize key bridges over the River Orne and Caen Canal. First, in "one of the finest flying feats of the war", three Horsa gliders accurately crash-landed in the marshy terrain immediately adjacent to the Caen Canal bridge at Benouville (known ever since as "Pegasus" Bridge after the winged horse emblem worn by these liberators). Led by Major John Howard, the men of the 2nd Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry (Ox & Bucks L1) and the 249th Field Company Royal Engineers boldly stormed across the bridge, guns blazing. A German soldier recalled that witnessing a "Para platoon in full cry had frightened the daylights" out of him. Within five minutes, and for the loss of just two killed, the Paras had secured the bridge and liberated the first French building - the Cafe Gondree. Subsequently, the Paras held the bridge until relieved later that day by forces that had landed on Sword beach, while other units of the 6th Airborne also secured several bridges over the Orne, the Ranville-Herouvillete area east of the river, and the Merville Battery. Meanwhile, from 0100 hours, two


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    American airborne divisions landed in the marshy terrain behind Utah to seize key bridges and road junctions and thus delay German counter-attacks and facilitate an Allied advance from the beach. At 0215 hours, the German LXXXIV Corps concluded that these airborne assaults were the start of the long anticipated Allied invasion, and consequently went onto full alert. For many hours to come, however, the higher German authorities - including Hitler remained convinced that the landings were just a diversion prior to the main Allied attack in the Pas de Calais. As these airborne operations unfolded, the Allied naval armada approached the Normandy coastline, being first spotted by German naval observers at 0325 hours. During the next two hours, the armada dropped anchor opposite the five invasion beaches. To the enemy, the sight of such a vast military force was shocking: "But that's not possible" was all that Lieutenant Frerking at Strongpoint WN62 on Omaha beach could utter! After 1,900 Allied bombers had attacked enemy positions, and as dawn approached, the invasion fleet opened fire, with spotting provided by RAF, Fleet Air Arm and US Navy aircraft, on the German defences. All was now set for the five assault landings to begin as scheduled - from as early as 0630 hours at Utah to as late as 0745 hours at Juno, according to the tidal conditions.

    KEY FACTS
    Allied Forces Deployed on D-Day
    The Invasion Fleet: 6,939 vessels
    1,213 warships
    4, 126 transport vessels
    1 ,600 support vessels
    The Aerial Armada: 1 1 ,680 aircraft
    4,370 bombers
    4,190 fighters and fighter-bombers
    1,360 transports
    1,760 other aircraft
    The Ground Forces: 159,000 troops
    130,000 troops landed via beaches
    29,000 airborne troops ​
     
  2. Jim

    Jim New Member

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    The Landings At Sword

    The eastern beach, Sword stretched for eight miles from the Orne estuary at Ouistreham in the east through to St-Aubin-sur-Mer. The Allies had divided this beach area into four sectors - from east to west, Roger, Queen, Peter and Oboe, but offshore rocks prevented the British 3rd Division from landing on the latter two sectors. The 8th Brigade Group, which formed the division's spearhead, attacked the defences manned by the German 736th Grenadier Regiment on Queen beach, who were centred on the strongpoint at la Breche. The British assault force fielded a particular combination of infantry, commandos and specialised armoured units that, broadly speaking, would be repeated on the other two Anglo-Canadian beaches. The specialised armour included amphibious Duplex-Drive (DD) Sherman’s, Flails, Churchill AVRE’s, Centaurs and BARV’s. In addition, the force fielded two small groups that provided crucial capabilities: the dedicated Royal Engineers (RE) and Royal Navy (RN) beach clearance teams courageously cleared enemy obstacles such as mines while under fire, and the beach masters skilfully directed the forces that had reached the beach and prevented chaos from ensuing. RAF Beach Balloon Flight disembarked inflated barrage balloons from the landing craft and set up passive defences against an already depleted Luftwaffe threat in the region. At 0530 hours, the large transport ships of Force "S" began to lower their small Landing Craft Assault (LCAs), packed full with the leading infantry platoons, into the turbulent seas of the Channel. As these small craft struggled toward the coast, the heavy seas pitched them about, causing many of the soldiers aboard to be violently seasick. To combat his troops sagging spirits, Major "Banger" King of the East Yorkshire Regiment read extracts from Shakespeare's Henry V to his men via the landing craft's tannoy, including the famous “once more unto the breach" passage. Alongside them, the larger Landing Craft Tanks (LCT’s) either unloaded their cargoes of amphibious DD Sherman’s or else carried on toward the shore, aiming to land their Flails, AVRE’s and Centaurs. As the craft approached the beach, Allied cruisers, destroyers and support craft fired at the German positions. From 0650 hours, this fire was reinforced when the 72 field guns of the 3rd Division's artillery regiments opened fire on the German defences after 1 8 landing ships brought them to within six miles of the coast. This immense firepower effectively suppressed the German defences, and consequently most of the leading landing craft managed to approach the beach without being damaged by enemy fire. As the first wave of 20 LCAs neared the beach at 0715 hours, it became obvious to the Allied soldiers that, due to the bad weather, the incoming tide at Sword beach was already higher than had been expected. Consequently, several landing craft inadvertently crashed into submerged German obstacles that the Allies had expected to be visible above water.

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    This unexpectedly high tide reduced the depth of the beach, conveniently limiting the amount of dead ground that the infantry needed to cross, yet a1sc inconveniently restricting the space in which the armoured vehicles could assemble. At 0726 hours - one minute later than scheduled the beach clearance and control teams, together with the assault infantry, struggled through the surf to the shore, with the supporting Flails and AVRE’s alongside them. A few minutes later, the first of the 28 DD Sherman’s that had neither sunk in the heavy swell nor succumbed to German fire reached the beach. By 0750 hours the 1st South Lancashire Regiment (South Lancs) and the 2nd East Yorkshire Regiment (East Yorks) were ashore and fighting themselves forward, aided by the fire support provided by the specialised armour that had made it ashore.
    During the next two hours, the British forces overcame intense enemy resistance to capture the coastal strongpoint at la Breche. In the aftermath of this action, one observer captured for posterity the grim realities of war. He described this sector of the beach as "a sandy cemetery with unburied new dead and half un-dead, missing arms and legs, their blood clotting in the sand". As this engagement raged, other British and French troops fought their way east into the fringes of Ouistreham, and successfully pushed nearly two miles inland to capture Hermanville-sur-Mer. All morning, the follow-up forces, the 185th and 9th Infantry Brigades, together with further commandos from the 1st Special Service Brigade continued to land on the ever-narrowing strip of sandy beach. The huge traffic jam that built up prevented the supporting armour from moving inland to the team at Hermanville. At noon, the 185th Infantry Brigade began to push inland despite its lack of supporting armour, which was ordered to catch up as best it could.


    The Landings At Juno


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    Meanwhile, the 3rd Canadian Infantry Division, also part of Lieutenant-General Crocker's I Corps, assaulted 'Juno", the central British-Canadian beach, The Allies had divided this beach, which stretched six miles from St-Aubin-sur-Mer in the east through to la Riviere, into three sectors – Nan,. Mike and Love, On Nan beach the 8th Canadian Brigade Group assaulted with two infantry battalions plus 48 Commando Royal Marines (RM), supported by specialised armour; further west, the 7th Canadian Brigade Group landed on "Mike", At 0745 hours, the assault forces approached the beach, only to encounter determined enemy resistance. Thus it was not until 0900 hours that they managed to secure the first exits from the beach. During the rest of the morning, Canadian and British Commando forces advanced through St-Aubin and Courseulles, before pushing up to four miles inland. Pockets of enemy forces, however, continued to hold out in the coastal villages until early evening.



    The Landings At Gold

    The western British-Canadian beach sector, Gold, stretched for nine miles from Ia Riviere in the east through to Port-en-Bessin. The Allies had divided this beach into four sectors, named (from east to west) King, Jig, Item and How. Offshore rocks restricted the assault mounted on "Gold" beach by the British 50th (Northumbrian) Infantry Division - part of Lieutenant-General Bucknall's XXX Corps - to just "King" and "Jig" sectors. Between 0545 and 0715 hours, Allied naval vessels bombarded the German defences, augmented by the 72 ship borne artillery pieces fielded by the 50th Division. According to Sergeant Major Jack Villader Brown, the latter fired rapidly for so long that "the guns got so hot the blokes could hardly handle them".
    Next, the 69th Brigade Group assaulted "King" at 0730 hours with the standard formation of two infantry battalions backed by specialised armour. Simultaneously, a similar grouping from 231 st Brigade Group, plus an additional Royal Marine (RM) Commando, landed on 'jig". Despite their understandable apprehensions over the imminent battle, many of the assault troops "were so glad to get off the landing craft to escape the seasickness". The infantry landings were aided by the naval bombardment's effective suppression of most of the German defences, with the exception of the strongpoint of le Hamel.


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    Although the AVRE and Flail teams successfully landed on schedule alongside the assault infantry, the Centaurs and DD Sherman's were delayed. The latter arrived late because the rough seas prevented them from "swimming" ashore. Instead, their LCT's had to bring them right up onto the shore line. At Mont Fleury, behind "King" beach, the 6th Green Howards successfully fought their way off the beach, thanks in part to the exceptional courage displayed by Sergeant Major HoIlis. Further west, the German strongpoint of le Hamel remained largely undamaged, despite the prior strikes mounted by Allied Typhoon fighter-bombers. The limited amount of available armoured support proved insufficient to prevent the Hampshires from becoming pinned down by enemy fire opposite le Hamel. Private Hooley from "A" Company recalled poignantly that "a sweet rancid smell, never forgotten, was everywhere; it was the smell of burned explosive, torn flesh, and ruptured earth". He remembered witnessing a Flail tank explode after taking a direct hit, "out of which came cart wheeling through the air a torn shrieking body". Despite these grievous losses, the British forces nevertheless managed to fight their way doggedly forward. By around 0930 hours they had secured the beach against determined enemy resistance. The battle for le Hamel itself, however, raged on until afternoon. One Hampshire soldier recalled it was a "bloody awful" experience, which he "did not expect to survive". Subsequently, during the rest of the morning, the forces of the 50th Division pushed inland four miles toward the town of Creully, and 47 Commando Royal Marines struck west four miles to seize Port-en-Bessin and close the gap with the Americans at "Omaha".
     
  3. Jim

    Jim New Member

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    The Landings At Gold and Omaha

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    A nine-mile gap existed between Gold and Omaha, the eastern America n beach. The spearhead of General Gerow's VII US Corps the 1st US Infantry Division (known to all as the "Big Red One") landed on "Omaha". This beach ran for four miles from Port-en-Bessin in the east through to Vierville in the west. To support the 1st Division's assault, 329 American B24 bombers dropped 13,000 bombs on the German coastal defences. The bad weather forced the air crews to bomb blind using just their instruments. Just before releasing their bombs they were ordered to wait a few seconds longer than calculated to ensure that no bombs fell on the invasion armada. As a result, most of the bombs fell behind the German coastal defences. The poor visibility also hampered naval fire support, and concerns about friendly-fire casualties prompted commanders to redirect tactical air support onto targets deeper in the hinterland. The combination of these factors left the enemy defences relatively intact. In addition, Allied intelligence had failed to detect the reinforcement of this coastal sector by the German 352nd Infantry Division. All of this bore ill for the actual assault, which commenced at 0640 hours. The leading American infantry first had to struggle through neck-deep, heavily-pitching water. When they reached the shore, moreover, they encountered murderous enemy fire that inflicted terrible casualties. As incoming waves deposited more forces onto the beach, the area became a scene of death and destruction. All morning the invading troops bravely strove to advance off the beach despite the hail of defensive fire they encountered, and despite the mounting toll of the dead, the dying and the wounded lying on the beach. Indeed, it was largely through such bravery that by noon on D-Day at Omaha the Americans still had a foothold on enemy-occupied soil, even if this remained precarious.

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    Events panned out very differently on the other American beach, Utah, located along the south-eastern corner of the Cotentin Peninsula. Utah lay 13 miles west of Omaha, from which it was separated by the marshes along the Vire and Douve estuaries. On this beach, the forces of Lieutenant General "Lightning" Joe Collins VII US Corps were to land. The 4th US Infantry Division's assault began at 0630 hours after accurate naval gunfire had smashed the relatively modest German coastal defences. The Germans had only lightly fortified the Utah sector because they believed that their deliberate flooding of the low-lying areas behind the beach provided a strong natural defence. In the face of this moderate resistance and despite the difficult terra in, the Americans soon managed to advance across the marshy hinterland to link up with the US airborne forces dropped a few hours previously in the Merderet and Douve valleys. The successful landings on Utah were achieved for the price of just 200 American casualties.

    During the rest of D-Day, the Allies advanced further inland from these separate beaches to create two larger beachheads. Advancing south four miles from Sword, elements of the 185th Brigade reached Bieville, while 45 Commando Royal Marines thrust south-south-east and crossed Pegasus Bridge to link up with the airborne forces located east of the Orne. The commandos then continued north-east to link up with the Paras at Merville Battery. Meanwhile, as 41 Commando Royal Marines attacked the town of Lion-sur-Mer, the 8th and 9th Infantry Brigades thrust south-west, but the bitter resistance offered by the "Hillman" strongpoint stalled their drive on the vital Periers ridge.

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    This setback enabled elements of the German 21st Panzer Division to advance northwards toward the coast through the three-mile gap that still existed between the Sword and Juno beachheads. Allied resistance, however, coupled with persistent air support, prevented all but small units of enemy forces from reaching the coast. In the meantime, the 3rd Canadian Division had advanced up to five miles inland across a five-mile front that ran from Anisy in the east through to Creully. At the latter location, the Canadians had linked up with the 69th Brigade, part of 50th Division, which had advanced six miles south from Gold beach to the town of Coulombs. Further west, the 50th Division's other two brigades had advanced up to five miles south-west to reach positions just two miles short of Bayeux. In addition, by nightfall, elements of two new British divisions had begun to disembark onto the Normandy beaches. Further west, American forces pushed inland from Utah to link up with their airborne comrades. At "Omaha", American soldiers determinedly fought their way inland to secure by dusk a tenuous four-mile wide by one-mile deep foothold on French soil, but only at the cost of over 2,000 casualties.

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    By midnight, the 159,000 Allied troops, marines, airmen and naval personnel ashore had together successfully established four sizeable beachheads. The forces that had assaulted "Sword" had linked up with the 6th Airborne to create a 25 square mile salient, while the forces that landed at "Juno" and "Gold" had joined up to create a 1 2-mile wide beachhead; further west came the two American beachheads. Although the invasion front remained vulnerable to German counterattack, the stunning success achieved on D-Day now made it very difficult for the enemy to throw the liberators back into the sea. The successful establishment of the "Second Front" on 6th June represented a crucial step on the Allied march to victory over the evil empire
    that was Hitler's Nazi Reich.

    The following infomation was kindly forwarded by: swordcolin

    The above photo of 4 Commando attacking Ouistreham after landing on Queen Red, Sword beach. This is a still frame from Sgt George Laws who landed from a LCA with 4 Commando at 0755. The DD Sherman belonged to B Squadron of 13/18 Hussars which landed practically at H Hour and gave precious assistance to 4 Commando in their attack on the 6-gun positions in Ouistreham and the attack on the Casino. The DD tank in the photo, N° 43, was the leader of B Squadron. Time of still frame is approx 0820.

    BRITISH SPECIALISED ARMOUR (79th Armoured Division)
    •DUPLEX-DRIVE (DD) SHERMAN
    (amphibious tank)
    •ARMOURED VEHICLES ROYAL ENGINEERS (AVRE)
    (bunker-busting assault vehicle)
    •ROYAL MARINE CENTAUR IV
    (close support tank)
    •SHERMAN FLAIL
    (mine-clearing tank)
    •BEACH ARMOURED RECOVERY VEHICLE (BARV)
    (recovered drowned vehicles and pushed-off landing craft)
     
  4. Jim

    Jim New Member

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    The Victoria Cross

    The Victoria Cross is the British realm's highest award for gallantry in the face of the enemy. It has precedence over any other of our Sovereign's awards or Commonwealth decorations. The Victoria Cross was founded by Royal Warrant on 29 January 1856. The Cross itself is cast from the bronze of cannons captured at Sevastopol during the Crimean War. The design, chosen by Queen Victoria, consists of a cross with the Royal Crest resting upon a scroll bearing the words "For Valour". Since its inception, the Victoria Cross has been awarded 1,354 times. The youngest recipient was 15 years old and the eldest was 69 years old. Three cases exist where both father and son have won the Victoria Cross; four pairs of brothers have also been recipients.

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    Extracts from the citation for the Victoria Cross: Company Sergeant Major Stanley Elton Hollis
    During the assault on the beaches and the Mont Fleury battery, CSM Hollis' Company Commander noticed that two of the pillboxes had been bypassed and went with Hollis to see that they were clear. When they were 20 yards from the pillbox, a machine gun opened fire from a slit and CSM Hollis instantly rushed straight at the pillbox, recharging his magazine threw a grenade through the door and fired his Sten gun into it, killing two Germans and making the remainder prisoner. Later the same day ... the Company encountered a field gun and crew armed with Spandau’s at 100 yards range ... Hollis pushed forward to engage the gun with a PIAT from a house at 50 yards. He was observed by a sniper who fired and grazed his right cheek and at the same time the gun swung round and fired at point blank range into the house ... He later found that two of his men had stayed behind in the house and immediately volunteered to get them out. In full view of the enemy, who were continually firing at him, he went forward alone using a Bren gun to distract their attention from the other men. Under cover of his diversion, the two men were able to get back. Wherever the fighting was heaviest CSM Hollis appeared and, in the course of a magnificent day's work, he displayed utmost gallantry and on two separate occasions his courage and initiative prevented the enemy from holding up the advance.

    KEY FACTS About the Victoria Cross:
    It was founded by Royal Warrant on 29 January 1856
    It has been awarded 1,354 times
    The youngest recipient was 15 years old and the eldest was 69 years old
    One Victoria Cross was awarded following the D-Day Landings.

    Normandy Today

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    Bayeux Memorial which stands opposite the war cemetery and bears the names of the men of the commonwealth forces who have no known grave.

    Today, the legacy of the D-Day Landings casts a powerful impact on the Normandy coastline. There are few locations in the world where there are so many memorials, museums, vehicles and military buildings available to be visited by those interested in the events of 6 June 1944. Indeed, what is now called "battlefield tourism" is big business. Despite fairly rapid post-war building development, traces of the German Atlantic Wall defences can be seen along much of the coastline. The remains of the "Mulberry" harbour dominate the waters off the coast at Arromanches: soon after D-Day had ended, the Allies towed the massive concrete structures of the "Mulberry" artificial harbour across the Channel and constructed this ready-to-use port facility. In addition, there are many dozens of memorials, monuments and museums that can be visited. Some of the key sites include the Pegasus Bridge Museum at Benouville, the Atlantic Wall Museum in Ouistreham, and the 6 June 1944 Museum at Arromanches. Out in the open, visitors stand little chance of finding even the smallest relic of the fighting, as the souvenir hunters have long since swept the whole area clean.

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    War Graves

    Finally, the D-Day battlefield also features the immaculately maintained Commonwealth War Graves Commission (CWGC) Military Cemeteries. Those located near to the coast are Bayeux, Beny-sur-Mer, Cambes-en-Plaine, Douvres-la-Deliverande, Hermanville-su r-Mer, Ranville and Ryes, as well as the American and German cemeteries at St Laurent and La Cambe respectively. Those commemorating the 60th Anniversary of D-Day will, no doubt, wish to pay their respects to those military personnel who paid the ultimate price for bravery carrying out their duty in the cause of freedom.

    KEY FACTS
    The Commonwealth War Graves Commission maintains over 1,179,000 war graves at 23,203 burial sites in 148 countries around the world. It also commemorates a further 760,193 Commonwealth war dead on memorials to the missing.
    Commonwealth governments share the cost of maintenance in proportion to the number
    of graves of their war dead: UK - 79%; Canada - 10%; Australia - 6%; New Zealand - 2%; South Africa - 2%; India - 1 %.


    Source: COI Communications
     
  5. Dave War44

    Dave War44 Member

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    Bumping this. It has 20 views, but most of them are mine.
    :eyes:
     
  6. Jim

    Jim New Member

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    lol Dave, thou the picture of the Vet at the end says so much and worth the bump. :thumb:
     
  7. fpbeast

    fpbeast New Member

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    Execllent Info Really great find
     

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