- Starts: 05/06/2019 9:00 am
- Ends: 09/06/2019 4:00 pm
Portsmouth will be the focal point of the UK commemorations for D-Day 75. There will be a host of events taking place from 5 to 9 June, including the UK’s national event on 5 June.
Wednesday 5 June:
The day will begin with a major national commemorative event on Southsea Common, including a flypast of 26 RAF aircraft – including Spitfire.
Later that afternoon there will be a flying display above Southsea Common by the Red Arrows.
The evening commemorations will see MV Boudicca depart Portsmouth with 300 D-Day veterans on board for their trip to Normandy. The ship, specially chartered by the Royal British Legion, will be escorted by a Royal Navy vessel to represent the famous crossings that took place 75 years ago.
Thursday 6 June:
The commemorative events for D-Day 75 continue on 6 June with a Remembrance Service held at the D-Day Stone in Southsea opposite South Parade Pier. The morning event invites the people of Portsmouth to pay their respects to those who paid the ultimate sacrifice on 6 June 1944.
Throughout the day there will also be live coverage on the big screen at Southsea Common of events in Normandy. These will include an inauguration at the site of the Normandy Memorial Trust’s British Normandy Memorial and The Royal British Legion’s services at Bayeux Cathedral and Bayeux Cemetery.
The evening will conclude with a showing of the music and entertainment taking place beside the beaches in Arromanches.
Friday 7 June:
Portsmouth Music Hub will kick off commemorative events on 7 June, with a performance on Southsea Common of a special composition for D-Day 75.
In the early evening, Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra will perform its own D-Day 75 composition on Southsea Common. The piece, written by James Olsen for a specially formed young person’s choir, is inspired by the reminiscences of D-Day veterans and the D-Day Story.
The evening will conclude with a children’s film screening on the big screen at Southsea Common. The film that gets aired will be voted on by the public.
Saturday 8 June:
The Portsmouth Revival will take centre stage for D-Day 75 commemorations on 8 June. The event – taking place on Southsea Common – will feature entertainment and activities for all the family, including music and dancing from the 1940s; arena displays; military and vintage vehicles; exhibitions and displays; a 1940s vintage market, and film screenings.
Later in the evening will be the Sunset Concert for Heroes. This free, unticketed 1940s-themed concert will welcome the Portsmouth Military Wives Choir and the D-Day Darlings to Southsea Common.
The day’s events conclude with a fireworks display on Southsea seafront.
Sunday 9 June:
The Portsmouth Revival continues through to Sunday 9 June. The weekend-long event will see Southsea Common hosting a plethora of activities for the whole family, including 1940s-style music and dancing, arena displays and exhibitions. There will also be military and vintage vehicles on display, as well as film screenings and vintage market.
Re-opened in April 2018, the D-Day Story takes the visitors through the build up to the event, D-Day itself and the Battle of Normandy. The story is told through the perspectives of the people involved using objects, interactives and video. The impressive 83-metre long Overlord Embroidery offers a fantastic finale to the visit.
Bring your nostalgic D-Day and WW2 objects to the museum for identification by an expert panel of museum Curators. Throughout the day there will be talks by Curators from The Keep Military Museum and The Museum of Army Chaplaincy.