- Boulevard Fabian Ware, Bayeux, France
With nearly 4.000 British soldiers buried here, the Bayeux War Cemetery is the largest British military cemetery of the Second World War in France. The adjacent memorial commemorates the unidentified Commonwealth soldiers who fell during the Battle of Normandy and recalls the close links between Normandy and Britain.
The British War Cemetery in Bayeux is the largest British military cemetery of the Second World War in France, holding the remains 4.000 British and 181 Canadian soldiers. It also contains the graves of a number of Australians, New Zealanders, South Africans, Poles, Russians, French, Czechs, Italians and Germans.
British tradition prescribes that soldiers are buried with their comrades in arms, close to where they died. This explains the wide dispersal of British military graves. In the department of Calvados alone, there are nineteen military cemeteries and nearly a hundred monuments.
The town of Bayeux was liberated on 7 June 1944. The town suffered only minor damage, as no major battle took place here. Bayeux served as a base for the British army during the Battle of Normandy. Many soldiers who are buried in this cemetery died in field hospitals southwest of the town.
A memorial on the other side of the road bears the names of 1.801 Commonwealth soldiers who died during the Battle of Normandy and whose remains could not be found or identified. An inscription on the monument recalls William the Conqueror, the duke of Normandy who became king of England in 1066: “Nos a Gulielmo victi victoris patriam liberavimus” (“We, once conquered by William, have now set free the conqueror’s native land”).
Fought between the iconic landings on 6 June 1944 and the liberation of Paris on 25 August, the Battle of Normandy is often overlooked. Yet this campaign decided the course of the war in Northwestern Europe. The losses were huge: more than 100.000 people were killed during the 80 days, 20.000 of them civilians.
Bernard Montgomery was one of the most renowned Allied generals. He gained great popularity after his victories in North Africa (El Alamein). Thereafter Montgomery led the Allied ground operations in Normandy, The Netherlands and Northern Germany. His operational choices and
As a young girl of 19 years old Chantal Nobécourt volunteered for the Red Cross in Caen in the summer of 1944. When the city endured the heavy bombardments by the German and Canadian armies she worked at the nursery in the Malherbe High School, that was equipped as refugee centre for the inhabitants of Caen.