June will mark 75 years since the historic Normandy Landings, the largest amphibious assault in hist
June will mark 75 years since the historic Normandy Landings, the largest amphibious assault in history.
On June 6, 1944, an Allied invasion force of 156,000 troops landed in Normandy. Supporting the invasions were more than 7,000 ships and smaller vessels off the coast and 11,000 aircraft.
In total, British, Commonwealth and Allied casualties (killed, wounded or missing) on D-Day numbered approximately 4,300.
The invasion established a crucial second front in the liberation of Europe from Nazi occupation, ultimately leading to victory for Allied Forces in 1945.
Portsmouth will be the focal point of the UK commemorations for D-Day 75. There will be a host of events taking place from June 5 to 9, including the UK’s national event on June 5.
At 11:30am The D-Day 75 National Commemorative Event will take place on Southsea Common. Veterans will join today’s Armed Forces and VIPs for a BBC programme of live music, performance and flypasts. Large screens will be provided on the common for members of the public who wish to watch the event.
At 12:45pm (approx) A Royal Navy frigate will fire a naval gun salute followed by a spectacular flypast of up to 25 historic and modern RAF aircraft including the Red Arrows and the iconic Spitfire.
At 4:00pm The Red Arrows will return for a display of speed and agility above Southsea Common.
At 6:25pm The Royal British Legion’s specially chartered ship, the MV Boudicca, will set sail from Portsmouth with 300 veterans to Normandy. HMS St Albans, a Type-23 Royal Navy frigate, will escort the MV Boudicca along with four smaller Royal Navy vessels. Royal Navy ships docked in port will pay their respects, before the boat emerges into the Solent to be met by a flotilla of Royal Navy vessels which will sail past her in salute with sailors lining the decks. Members of the public are encouraged to line key vantage points to wave off the veterans as they retrace the journey they made in 1944.
At 7:40pm (approx) The RAF’s Battle of Britain Memorial Flight will fly over Portsmouth to mark the departure of The Royal British Legion’s ship.
A series of commemorative events and activities organised by Portsmouth City Council will take place from June 5 to 9 in the city, from concerts to film screenings, The Portsmouth Revival Festival and more.
For more details, please see the Visit Portsmouth website: www.visitportsmouth.co.uk.