Caption: Picture: Eric Cormack. Poseidon aircraft arrives at kinloss barraks. lord lt seymour munro

THIS year’s significant anniversary of the D-Day landings is to be marked in Findhorn, while major services take place in Normandy and Portsmouth.

Operation Overlord, the Allied Invasion of Europe which led to the defeat of Nazi Germany, started with the major amphibious landings on the coast of Normandy on June 6, 1944, known widely as D-Day.

Troops of 3rd Infantry Division on Queen Red beach, Sword area, around 8.45am, on D-Day. In the foreground are sappers of 84 Field Company Royal Engineers, part of No5 Beach Group, identified by the white bands around their helmets. Behind them, medical orderlies of 8 Field Ambulance, RAMC, can be seen assisting wounded men. In the background commandos of 1st Special Service Brigade can be seen. Picture:

One of the first two British Divisions ashore on Sword Beach was the 3rd Division. It had trained around the Moray Firth beaches and in Findhorn Bay between December 1943 and March 1944 together with the warships and landing craft of Force S the Naval Task Force which would take the Division across the Channel.

A commemoration service will be held by the quays in Findhorn, by permission of the Royal Findhorn Yacht Club, to remember this momentous day and all of those who took part in this tremendous endeavour.

There will be participation from the Lieutenancy of Moray, Moray Council, 39 Engineer Regiment, RAF Lossiemouth, the Royal British Legion Scotland (Forres) Branch, Veterans’ associations and many others. The service will start at 11.30am by the quays on Thursday 6 June with everyone welcome to join.

Lord-Lieutenant of Moray, Major General Seymour Monro, said: “I feel it is really important to commemorate this extraordinary day.

“Hundreds of thousands of sailors, soldiers and airmen were involved in deception plans, parachute landings, aircraft attacks, naval bombardments, and the dangerous, deadly business of getting ashore and fighting for a foothold in France whilst the enemy were determined to push them back into the sea. It’s a day to remember.”

Caption: John Cowe. Moray Council full council meeting December 7th. Picture: Daniel Forsyth.

Moray Council’s Civic Leader, Councillor John Cowe, added: “There were so many servicemen from Moray who took part on D-Day including those in the 51st Highland Division who followed on from the 3rd Division.

“It is fascinating to learn about the effect on the local people who lived and worked in Moray under severe wartime restrictions to keep invasion plans secret as the 3rd Division carried out their training”.

Further details of the service will be released nearer the time.