D-Day. Facts You Didn’t Know About The Invasion

D-Day. Facts You Didn’t Know About The Invasion

Today is the 70th Anniversary of the D-Day landings where the beginning of the Allied invasion took place, paving the way to defeat Nazi Germany. In this blog we reveal some interesting facts about Britain’s finest hour as well as what’s planned for today.

Did you know?

The D in D-Day holds no significance and in fact any other letter could have been used. Its only purpose was to be a point of reference.

The landings were to take place in May, but were postponed until June 5th and later called off for 24-hours due to bad weather. More than 4,000 ships and smaller crafts crossed the Channel to the Northern coast of France behind enemy lines, followed by 1,300 RAF planes and 1,000 American bombers dropping bombs in Northern France.

Did you know?

Norfolk House

In 1943, early copies of plans blew out of the window of Norfolk House. A man passing by handed them in and said he couldn’t read them due to his poor eye sight.

A key element to the lead up to the invasion was deception. Elaborate deceptions, decoys, and hoaxes that included blow-up dummy vehicles and weaponry that could be seen overhead by enemy spy planes to fool the German’s. They then sent 40,000 of their troops to Northern France into thinking the invasion was to come from our side of the Channel.

Did you know:

New gadgets were designed for D-Day, which included a “swimming tank”, collapsible motorbikes, tanks, and a flame-throwing tank named “The Crocodile”.

Dummy Vehicles

Yesterday, hundreds of veterans and soldiers gathered in Portsmouth where they were joined by the the Royal Marines and Royal Navy who staged an enactment of the amphibious assault in Southsea with the Red Arrows giving a wonderful display in the sky. Overlooked by a sea of people, parachutists landed on Sword Beach across the Channel. The Prince of Wales also attended a memorial service in France to mark the strategic takeover of Pegasus Bridge.

Did you know?

Many enemy paratroopers were dropped in the wrong place, and dummy paratroopers were also dropped to help convince the Germans that the real landings would take place elsewhere. 

D Day Thursday

Red Arrows Veteran

This commemoration has brought together the likes of princes, force members, and veterans; but numbers are decreasing. This would probably be the last momentous anniversary most will witness, honouring those who didn’t come home to see the White Cliffs. Their stories of heroism and sacrifice will live forever amongst us who have listened and read the events that happened 70 years ago.

 Did you know?

The newly developed drug penicillin went with troops on D-Day and saved thousands of lives.

 Did you know?

Condoms were issued to soldiers – most were used for covering the end of their rifles to keep them dry

 Did you know?

Nazi leader, Adolf Hitler, was asleep when word of the invasion arrived. No one dared wake him and it’s said that vital time was lost in sending reinforcements.