D Day 80th Anniversary Commerations

As many of you will be aware, this year marks the 80th Anniversary of D Day and along with the rest of the UK and France, we are holding a series of events to commemorate the anniversary.

In the lead up to D Day, a phantom army was created along the south-east coast (including the White Cliffs of Dover), with inflatable tanks and army vehicles, fake radio traffic and double agents delivering false information all to deceive the enemy into thinking any invasion would be across the Pas de Calais.   Operation Fortitude South, as it was called, was part of a larger operational strategy to deceive the enemy.  

The Operation was a success but came with immense impact to the area we live in, with the most ‘shelling’ in St Margaret’s being recorded in the days and weeks just after D Day, as the enemy still considered there to be a threat from the South East coast.

Here’s a taster of some of the events taking place, and more information can be found in the Programme which has hopefully been delivered to your homes, and posted on our Website, and Facebook page.

Thursday, 6th June – Lighting of the Beacon (along with the rest of the UK and France, we will light a beacon on the beach at 9.15pm).  The event will begin at 5.30pm with a fete, live ‘local’ music, food available from the Coastguard, Ice Cream Kiosk and the Snack bar (who will all be open for the evening) and we also encourage you to bring along a picnic.  Our village choir will do 2 performances, including one directly before we light the beacon.  To reduce traffic congestion on Bay Hill during the event we will be providing a complimentary bus service, shuttling passengers from Nelson Park, Village Centre, and the top of Bay Hill down to the beach and back on a continuous loop. Please note there will be very limited parking in the Bay carpark so do use the complimentary bus service or walk to the Bay if you can. 

Friday, 7th June – 1940s dance in the Village Hall.   As well as a superb 1940s singer, the Village Players will also be leading a wartime singalong.   Tickets will be on sale at £5 each.  Available from the Post Office and the Village Store.

Saturday and Sunday 8th/9th June – the National Trust are kindly opening the Wanstone guns and offering a free tour at 10am each day. Please arrive at 0930 for 1000 start to experience a guided tour of the Wanstone Guns. Sturdy footwear is recommended as the paths are uneven under foot. Free Parking will be available in the National Trust car park on Upper Road.

In addition, we are creating several self-guided walks which will be available digitally and also in paper form in all our outlets in the village.

D Day Main flyer