Ham and Jam (part 1)

For the May bank holiday weekend, I took my girlfriend Emma to Normandy. Thankfully, she is quite the history buff and loves visiting historic sites. She's definitely not the 'sit and lie on a beach' type. We had a great time, enjoying the local cuisine and visiting the sites.

Airborne memorial at La Fiere

I'd previously been to Normandy in 2009, with a group of friends (Paul & Graham W, Tony S and the then editor of WS&S John K). This time I only had a weekend, so we had to pack in what we could in the time available.

The editor at Longues Sur Mer

We started with the Longues Sur Mer battery before travelling to the hotel. At pretty much every site we visited, we thought of the actions and the brave men who died there. I also admit, I considered how to take these actions and replay them on the tabletop, but there again I am a wargamer!

One for Rossco! The Devonshire regiment at D-Day.

Everywhere, there were little snippets of information to actions I've never come across before. On Saturday, we visited La Fiere, where the famous battles over the Merderet causeway took place (which I wrote an article about in WS&S 60).

The murderous Merderet causeway. 500 yards with no cover...

It still amazed me the courage of the US Airborne soldiers at La Fiere. SLA Marshall described it as one of the fiercest actions of the entire war. You really have to visit it to appreciate it.

St Mere Eglise church, complete with parachutist

Next, we went to St Mere Eglise and then onto Utah Beach. I'll talk more about our adventures in future blogs (including why they are entitled Ham and Jam!). Suffice to say my visit has inspired me to get painting and playing the Normandy campaign again.


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