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Thursday, June 6th, marks the 80th anniversary of the Allied invasion of Normandy in World War II. Several events will be held to commemorate the local heroes involved.

St Edmundsbury Cathedral in Bury St Edmunds is hosting the Suffolk Service of Commemoration, a special evening service on Thursday at 5.30pm.

East Anglian Daily Times: Thursday, June 6, marks the 80th anniversary of the Allied invasion of Normandy in World War II Thursday, June 6, marks the 80th anniversary of the Allied invasion of Normandy during World War II. (Image: PA)

The event, organised in partnership with the Royal British Legion, will be attended by veterans and serving military personnel. The Lord Lieutenant Lady Clare Euston and three military representatives will lay wreaths.

There will be readings, including a poem called “Normandy” recited by veteran Tony Hensby, who clearly remembers seeing the sky full of planes as a 14-year-old boy and later learning that they were flying to France for D-Day.

The Rev. Dr. Mike Harrison, Bishop of Dunwich, speaking at the event, said: “D-Day marks a globally significant turning point in world history, as the Normandy landings marked the beginning of the end of Nazi terror and all its horrors.”

“In Western Europe we still benefit from the peace dividend that we owe to the courage, steadfastness and sacrifices of many people on that day in June 1944, and we rightly commemorate it with praise and gratitude.”

East Anglian Daily Times: Rt Rev Dr Mike Harrison, Bishop of DunwichRt Rev Dr Mike Harrison, Bishop of Dunwich (Image: Keith Mindham)

The Rev. Joe Hawes, Dean of St Edmundsbury, said: “It is an honour for the Cathedral to host the D-Day Remembrance Service in the 1980s.

“An entire generation gave everything so that we could live in freedom. We must never forget their sacrifices. The sacrifices of those who never came home, those who came home, and those who stayed so that we could survive the conflict.”

In Haverhill, the mayor, Councilman David Smith, will hold a brief memorial service on Thursday at 11 a.m. in the town square.

The flag will then be raised and the Lamp of Peace lit and taken to St. Mary’s Church where the Rev. Max Drinkwater of St. Mary’s Church will lead a service.

This includes a proclamation written by the Pageant Master of D-Day 80, Bruno Peek CVO OBE OPR, followed by a memorial service which includes a performance of The Last Post by Archie Pannell (11).

East Anglian Daily Times: D-Day 80 pageant master, Bruno PeekParade Master of D-Day 80, Bruno Peek (Image: Newsquest)

At 6.30 p.m. the six bells of St. Mary’s Church will ring.

Public beacons will be lit in the following municipalities:

  • Framsden Parish Council
  • Mendlesham Parish Council
  • Lowestoft Town Council
  • Parish Council of St. Joseph’s College Benhall and Sternfield
  • Shottisham Parish Council
  • Rendlesham Parish Council
  • Great Waldingfield Parish Council
  • Charity Farm, Thorndon
  • Combs Parish Council Playing Field, Ringshall Village
  • Earl Stonham Parish Council and Earl Stonham Parish Hall
  • Brandon City Council
  • Bacton Parish Council
  • Melton Parish Council
  • Capel St Mary Parish Council
  • Leiston-cum-Sizewell Town Council
  • Ixworth & District Royal British Legion & RBL Standards perform a sunset ceremony with standards
  • Snape Parish Council
  • Blundeston and Flixton Levington and Stratton Hall Parish Council
  • Kedington & District Branch of the Royal British Legion
  • Kessingland Parish Council

In the following cities, criers will announce the proclamation:

  • David Burrows at Southwold
  • Andrew Parkhurst in Clare
  • Martin Payne in Bungay
  • Brenda Willison in Newmarket

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