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D-Day heroes remembered on 80th anniversary

Today marks the 80th anniversary of the D-Day landings when tens of thousands of Allied troops landed on five beaches in Normandy to liberate Europe. 

It was the greatest seaborne invasion force in history, and today events are taking place in France and the UK to mark the anniversary. 

Closer to home, Tameside honoured those who had fallen and fought in the conflict at a special Remembrance Service held yesterday at the Stalybridge War Memorial and led by the Royal British Legion. Local dignitaries also paid their respects at Dukinfield Town Hall.

This Sunday, the Civic Mayor of Tameside, Cllr Betty Affleck, will lead a further Remembrance at Ashton Parish Church, where she will lay a wreath at the altar at a special service. 

Following the service at 12 noon, organisations and members of the public are invited to place their own tributes in memory of all those who took part in Operation Overlord. This will be in the memorial chapel in the north aisle.

Cllr Hugh Roderick, Tameside Council’s armed forces champion, said: “Even today, 80 years after it took place, D-Day remains unique in military history. The sheer scale of the invasion is still hard to comprehend.

“However, D-Day involved far more people than the 400,000 sailors, soldiers and air crew who stormed the Normandy beaches in 1944. It took years of preparation and we should not forget all those involved in other capacities such as map-making, reconnaissance and deception.

“We owe a great debt to those men and women – many from Tameside’s towns and villages – who risked their lives to liberate western Europe after five years of occupation and give us the freedom we enjoy today. We must never forget what they did for us.”

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