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South Lancashire Regiment Memorial

On this location, several memorials have been placed. One of these memorials is dedicated to the South Lancashire Regiment.

Text on a memorial:
The town of Hermanville-sur-Mer was liberated on the morning of 6th June 1944 by 1st Battalion of the South Lancashire Regiment (Prince of Wales's Volunteers).

This memorial is dedicated to the memory of 288 officers and men of the Battalion who sacreficed their lives on D-Day and in the subsequent campaign to free North-West Europe.

Hermanville: The British on Sword beach

Operation Overlord unfolded in the heart of "Sword" as elsewhere. In the course of the night, the coastal defenses were bombed by the air force and the naval artillery took over at daybreak. Then, under German fire, the landing craft came aground. The special tanks opened the way, followed by assault waves of 3rd Infantry Division under Major-General Rennie.

The tanks attacked the concrete strong points then penetrated inland: the first battalion of the South Lancashires liberated the village of Hermanville at 10 a.m., whilst the Suffolk Regiment was freeing Colleville. The British advance was unable to reach Caen on the 6th as planned. The long ordeal of that city began the same day, at 11.30 a.m..

The Allies needed calm water to land men and equipment: the "Gooseberries" (codename) were old vessels that had been ballasted to a form a breakwater. Among 6 merchant ships and 3 warships sacrificed off Hermanville, the veteran battleship "Courbet" would not enjoy the glory of the "Georges-Leygues" and the "Montcalm", which fought conspicuously before the Longues battery, but scuttled itself, with its flag flying, on the morning of 7 June, in three fathoms of water about 1.5 miles offshore.

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  • Text: Ewoud van Eig
  • Photos: Ewoud van Eig