D-Day 75: Crowd on Southsea Common are excited about commemorations

THERE is a definite air of excitement on Southsea Common this morning as people gather from all corners of the globe for the D-Day 75 commemorations.

By Fiona Callingham and Annie Lewis
Wednesday, 5th June 2019, 11:15 am
Updated Wednesday, 5th June 2019, 11:23 am
Glenda and her husband Mike Kennedy (63) from Reading
Glenda and her husband Mike Kennedy (63) from Reading

Members of the public will be watching the events unfurl from the west side of the Common. 

Maggie and John Child travelled from Chichester. The couple had already spoken to a Polish news crew. 

‘It’s like the whole world is here,’ said Maggie, 69. 

Glenda and her husband Mike Kennedy (63) from Reading

‘Southsea is so closely linked with D-Day. We’ve come here for every anniversary- the 50th, 60th, 70th and now 75th. There’s so much history in Portsmouth linked to the Second World War.’

John, 67, said: ‘And for us all our parents’ generation were involved. My father and uncles were in the RAF and although not involved in D-Day it’s still very special to our family. 

‘I used to teach at the Chichester High School for Boys and 61 boys from that school lost their lives in the war.’

The thought that this could be the last D-Day commemoration for many veterans was not far from people’s minds. 

Maggie and John Child from Chichester

John added: ‘Many of these men are now in their 90s. So it’s so important that they are here for this today.’

Anne Bramwell, who is here with her husband Derek, is looking forward to the commemorations. 

Anne, 76, said: ‘It’s important because it’s our generations history.’

The couple, from Wiltshire, booked to come to Southsea especially for the D-Day 75 event.

Anne, 76, and Derek, 83, Bramwell from Wiltshire

‘I understand why Donald Trump is here but he’s wrecked it as security is so high around Southsea, locals can’t see anything.

‘But we’ve come here to enjoy the day.’ 

Glenda Kennedy, 67, from Reading said: ‘My uncle was in the D-Day landings. I know he would have loved to be here. 

‘It’s really good that all countries are represented by their heads of state.’