Queen confirms she will attend D-Day 75 anniversary commemorations in Portsmouth

HER Majesty the Queen is set to attend the D-Day 75 anniversary commemoration in Portsmouth next month.

Queen Elizabeth II will attend D-Day celebrations in Portsmouth. Picture: Jonathan Brady/PA Wire
Queen Elizabeth II will attend D-Day celebrations in Portsmouth. Picture: Jonathan Brady/PA Wire

The monarch will join US President Donald Trump on Southsea Common for the ceremony on June 5. 

Buckingham Palace made the announcement today, after it was revealed last month that the Queen had been invited to attend the commemorations. 

Portsmouth will be the national focal point of the D-Day anniversary with events during the whole week. 

Queen Elizabeth II will attend D-Day celebrations in Portsmouth. Picture: Jonathan Brady/PA Wire

Portsmouth North MP and new Defence Secretary Penny Mordaunt has welcomed the announcement. 

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She said: ‘As Defence Secretary and Member of Parliament for Portsmouth North I am immensely proud that Her Majesty The Queen will be present for the commemoration on Southsea Common.

‘For many, she is our strongest link to the Second World War generation and veterans will be delighted she will be present. D-Day 75 will be a memorable occasion and there is no better place in the UK to pay tribute to our Normandy veterans.

‘The breathtaking bravery and ingenuity they showed 75 years ago still echo through our nation’s armed forces and society as a whole.

‘This June, the government and those in defence intend to show our veterans that we will never forget the debt we owe for the peace and freedom we now enjoy.’

With less than a month to go, the Ministry of Defence is working alongside with The Royal British Legion to ensure as many Normandy veterans as possible register to attend the National Commemorative Event on June 5 on Southsea Common, from where much of the landing force sailed in 1944.

The event, produced by the BBC, will tell the story of D-Day using musical performance, testimonial readings and military displays including a fly-past of modern and historical aircraft. 

The event will be attended by the Prime Minister and over 300 veterans alongside senior political leaders from other nations. After the event, world leaders, veterans and members of the armed forces will attend a special reception.

The Royal British Legion’s assistant director for commemorative events, Bob Gamble OBE said: ‘The veterans are, and will be throughout the events in Portsmouth and France, our number one priority and at the heart of everything we do. 

‘This will be the last chance we have to host this number of D-Day and Normandy veterans, as we invite world leaders and the nation to pay tribute to the bravery and sacrifices they made 75 years ago.

‘That’s why we’re urging all veterans wishing to attend these events to please register for their place, to make sure that no one misses out on what will be an incredibly moving and poignant occasion.’

Each veteran can be accompanied by a carer to sit with them.

There is also an opportunity for two family members to attend as spectators but they must all register with the Legion for their places.