A graphic promoting D Day events in Northumberland

County events to commemorate D-Day 80th anniversary

A series of special events are taking place in June in Northumberland to mark the 80th anniversary of the D-Day landings. 

Blyth will be the focus of activity, with major events on the Quayside and the beachfront, culminating in a dazzling beacon lighting ceremony on the evening of June 6th. 

That date marks the 80th anniversary of D-Day, when Allied forces mounted the largest amphibious invasion the world has ever witnessed.  

In 1944 Operation Overlord saw around 4,000 ships and landing craft set down about 132,500 troops on five Normandy beaches in an action that would bring about the liberation of north-west Europe from Nazi occupation. 

The bravery and sacrifice of those people in securing the peace and freedom enjoyed today will be recognised at the events in Blyth and around the county, organised by Northumberland County Council on D-Day, and Blyth Town Council on June 1st. 

On Thursday, June 6th, D-Day proclamations will take place at 8am through Parish and Town Councils throughout the county. Later, a specially commissioned D-Day Poem will be recited at 11am in schools across Northumberland. 

From 4pm, one of the biggest community events of the year organised by the County Council will take place – culminating in a spectacular national beacon lighting. 

‘Northumberland Remembers’, which will be set up on Blyth Links, is a family focused event featuring a music stage with acts playing songs from the era and performances from Boulmer Military Wives Choir, Coquet Band and Soldiers of Swing.

And around 6pm, weather permitting, there will be a flypast from a vintage plane - either a Tiger Moth or a Chipmunk.

The evening will see a Commemoration Service on the plaza area outside the Dave Stephen’s Centre from 7:45 pm, followed by the lighting of a national beacon on the roof of the Centre by a local 100-year-old veteran at 9.15pm. 

The evening ends with communities being asked to pause for an International Tribute. 

1940hrs Welcome: Chair of the County Council Councillor John Beynon
1945hrs – 2010hrs Soldiers of Swing
2012hrs – 2028hrs Boulmer Military Wives Choir
2030hrs – 2045hrs Coquet Concert Band

All in place outside of Dave Stephens Centre, Blyth

2045 hrs Coquet Concert Band to play and Standards march in
2048hrs Piper to play lament
2055hrs Welcome: - Lord Lieutenant Dr. Caroline Pryer
2100 hrs Captain Will Ramsay, grandson of Admiral Ramsay, the architect behind D-Day
2110hrs Revd. Raymond Biddiss opening prayer
2113hrs Piper Tribute
2115hrs Lighting of Official Beacon Jack Hearn, Veteran followed by lighting of further beacons.
2116hrs International Tribute:
Cadet Corporal Kaitlyn Baker
Cadet Flight Sergeant Imogen Peel

2120hrs The Exhortation is recited: High Sheriff, Lucia Bridgeman
2122hrs Lowering of Union Flag and Standards as the Last Post is sounded
2123hrs The Two Minute Silence is observed.
2125hrs Reveille is sounded and Union Flag and Standards raised
2127hrs The Kohima Epitaph is recited: (Councillor Jeff Watson, Armed Forces Champion)
2128hrs Revd. Biddiss: Reflection and Prayers
Laying of wreaths accompanied by Coquet Concert Band
2135hrs Hymn - Amazing Grace (Piper to play intro followed by Band and all to sing)
2140hrs Revd Biddiss to give blessing
The Lord's Prayer
2145hrs National Anthem (all)
2148hrs Closing remarks: Councillor Glen Sanderson, Leader of the County Council
Thank you and dismiss: Revd Biddiss
Recession of Standards accompanied by Band


Starting the commemorative events is the Quayside Festival on Saturday 1 June - an event hosted by Blyth Town Council running the full length of the quayside from 10 am until 4 pm. 

The Quayside Festival will feature a variety of live musical performances, including those by The Community Voices Choir, Tall Ships Shanty Singers, The Victory Rollers, and Graeme Danby, and will also feature a local solo artist from Blyth.  

The event will also showcase a range of food options and local businesses. 

The Military will be present at the event and will display various activities, including a climbing wall and bungee run. Attendees will also have the opportunity to interact with the Royal Navy, Army and Royal Air Force as well as the local cadet groups, to learn more about their work and potential avenues for involvement.  

Local youth and community groups will also be in attendance to demonstrate what they have to offer for young people in the town. 

Blyth Battery and Rotary will also be joining the festivities with Army jeeps and cars from the era. The car park area of the enterprise centre will have rides and stalls, and the Harbour Commissioner’s building will be open for public exploration. 


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