It was destined to be a big event, and that’s exactly what happened when Clair Roberts and her large band of helpers decided to stage a 1940s festival commemorating 80 years since the Americans came to Bude to train for D-Day (6th June, 1944).
It was an arduous assault. Cliffs were scaled to neutralise enemy positions. Climbing cliffs was a major part of the training for the American troops, which is where Bude was so useful. It was not an easy mission.
Photo from Bude At War Facebook page.
For the full story, check this link which tells us that:
Following their actions Pointe du Hoc on 6-8 June 1944, Rudder’s Rangers suffered a seventy percent casualty rate. Less than seventy-five of the original 225 who came ashore on 6 June were fit for duty. Of those who served in the 2d Ranger Battalion on D-Day, seventy-seven were killed and 152 wounded.
A commemoration service for World War II veterans, past and present, was held today at 11am.
There were loads of other events, too, for all ages, including Enigma talks with Bletchley Park personnel, and codebreaking challenges with GCHQ.
It was rather thrilling seeing planes flying over the library, while we were talking to families about evacuation and rationing, and quite a crowd also watched baseball at the cricket ground and the Ranger Relay Rescue Event at the Sea Pool.
Sadly, by Sunday afternoon, the good old British weather was not playing ball but before the rain kicked in, many people loved seeing the amazing military vehicles and how a 1940s military camp would have looked.
With too many events to mention and give justice to, hopefully people will share their thoughts and photos on the event which is a magnificent feat of organisation. Well done to all involved in bringing Bude’s history to life with its World War II memories.