Thursday, March 27, 2014
A forces campaigner is urging Exmouth residents to help raise the £1,250 needed to mark the 70th anniversary of D-Day this summer.
Lionel Howell, the co-ordinator for the Phear Park event on Sunday, June 8, has invited representatives from the Royal Navy, Army, the United States and many other organisations to mark 70 years since the invasion of ‘fortress Europe’ which pre-empted the downfall of the Third Reich.
On June 6, 1944, more than 160,000 soldiers landed on the Normandy beaches - 73,000 Americans, 61,715 British and 21,400 Canadians.
And 195,700 Allied naval and merchant navy personnel in more than 5,000 ships were also involved
Mr Howell was also the organiser of the 60th anniversary event in 2004 - and then there were 41 standards carried by a parade of 370 marchers from all branches of the armed services.
This year they need to pay for the band, printing, insurance and a remembrance gift for the Normandy veterans that will be in attendance.
Mr Howell said: “We want to make sure that those veterans who are unable to travel to Normandy this year through health or age will get a memorable service of remembrance.
“Our one big aim is to raise the £1,250 to cover the cost involved.
“Should anyone wish to provide an event to help us raise this money we would be very appreciative and I know the Normandy veterans will be themselves.
“Standards and wreaths will be most welcome and we are considering containing the parade within the confines of Phear Park so that the veterans can see the whole service.
“It will form at the top of Phear Park and march in two directions, the first time ever.”
● If you can help, contact Lionel on 01395 276613/ 07984 730485.