Caen

© Nomandy Tourist Board

At dawn on June 6th, the bombing of towns in Normandy began. The entire centre of Caen was destroyed. The Allies’ objective was to destroy the towns so as to obliterate all communications and to slow German reinforcements. On the morning of June 7th about ten of Lower Normandy’s towns including Caen, Lisieux, Coutances, Saint-Lo and Vire had been wiped from the map.

Six weeks of fighting

Caen and its airfield at Carpiquet were keenly sought by the airmen of the RAF.

During June the town became a major strategic objective to the distress of its population which fled the bombardments.

 

The town became a major strategic objective to the distress of its population which fled the bombardments.

It wasn’t until the morning of July 9th, a month after the D-Day landings that Caen was finally liberated by the Canadians arriving from Saint-Germain-la-Blanche-Herbe. The British entered from the East and moved through the ruins.

But the Germans still held the right bank of the river and it wasn’t until July 19th that the last quarters of the town, such as Vaucelles, were liberated.

 

Watch the video