- Point of Interest
- 103 Ferry Rd, Hayling Island PO11 0DQ, Royaume-Uni
As part of the planning for Operation Overlord, it was decided that artificial harbours would be needed in order to offload the heavy and bulky cargo needed to mount a successful invasion of Normandy. These harbours were built in Britain, towed across the channel and then assembled by the army once in the waters surrounding France.
Hayling Island and Langstone Harbour were both sites where ‘Mulberry Harbours’ were constructed before they were towed across the Channel with the Allied invasion force on D-Day. These artificial harbours, with the codename Mulberry, allowed the Allies to disembark the crucial cargo needed to support the invasion. Artificial harbours were necessary because of the lack of big port facilities in Normandy.
The harbour at Omaha Beach had to be abandoned, due to storm damage less than a month after D-Day. But the Mulberry Harbour at Gold Beach, nicknamed Port Winston, was used to land 4 million tons of supplies, 2.5 million soldiers and half a million vehicles before the Allies took the port of Antwerp six months later. Assembled by the Royal Engineers, the completed harbour consisted of 33 jetties and 16 km of floating roadways, allowing both men, supplies and vehicles to easily be landed on the Normandy beaches.
The artificial harbours were created from five constituent parts, which, once assembled, correctly formed a harbour approximately of the same size as that of Dover. Crucial to creating the calm conditions necessary for a harbour were the breakwaters. Two separate designs were used: the ‘Bombardons’, which were floating outer breakwaters, and static breakwaters. These consisted of ‘Corncobs’, blockships which were sunk once in place, and concrete ‘Phoenix’ caissons, used to hold them in place. Once all of these parts were in place, a ‘Gooseberry’ was created: the calm waters required to construct the rest of the harbour. The final parts were the floating roadways or piers (‘Beetles’ or ‘Whales’) and pier heads (‘Spuds’) or landing wharves at which ships were unloaded.
Where the Mulberry Harbour components were built, on the shoreline of Langstone Harbour, is open to the public. A faulty caisson is left in situ at place of construction.
Parker A. Alford
As an artillery officer for the U.S. 101st Airborne Division, Parker Alford travelled to Normandy, France, as part of the D-Day invasion. In the lead-up to D-Day, Alford was stationed near Newbury, England, in one of the sealed forest camps used by the allies to hide troops and equipment from enemy detection.
Battle of Normandy
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.
The United Kingdom stood against Nazi Germany for the entire duration of World War II in Europe and served as the launching grounds for the liberation of Western Europe in June 1944. Immerse yourself in history in the English regions
Located on the southern coast of England, the region of Hampshire played a key role in the defence of Britain and the liberation of Europe during WWII. It was an important centre for aircraft production as it housed several military
Preparations for D-Day
D-Day is one of the most remembered campaigns of the Second World War. The operation involved troops from Britain, the United States, Canada and several other countries. On 6 June 1944 the Allied forces sailed across the English Channel to begin their campaign to gain victory against the German forces. Planning the invasion was an enormous undertaking.
Operation Fortitude South
As D-Day approached, Kent became the stage for one of the War’s greatest deception plans, Operation Fortitude South. In order to mislead the German army and conceal the real location of the Allied invasion of Western Europe, extensive military preparations were made around Dover. But it was all fake.
Frederick William [Fred] Perfect
During the D-Day invasion of 6 June 1944, journalist Fred Perfect sailed with the Allied troops on HMS Largs. As the Daily Telegraph’s special Naval War Correspondent, Perfect reported on many of the campaign’s events, both while he was on ship in the English Channel and on shore in Normandy, France.
Battle of Britain Memorial
The Battle of Britain Memorial can be found at Capel-le Ferne on the coast of Kent, England. It features one central statue of a pilot and the Christopher Foxley-Norris Memorial Wall. The Memorial was opened by the Queen Mother in 1993 and is dedicated to those who fought the Battle of Britain from July 10, 1940 to October 31, 1940.