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Southport Reporter®

Edition No. 153

Date:- 29 May 2004

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60 years on
Photo of Normandy beach by Patrick Trollope
THE greatest seaborne invasion ever is to be commemorated next month in a special 60th anniversary ceremony.

Normandy Veterans, civic guests and members of the public will join together to remember D-Day at St. George's Hall on Sunday 6 June.

Next week Tuesday, ten Normandy Veterans will visit the Lord Mayor to share their experiences of the invasion and finalise plans for Sunday's service. 

The group will also bring along their standard and the medals they were decorated with for the part they played during the Second World War.

Some of the veterans visiting the Town Hall will be travelling to Normandy to take part in one of the main commemorative ceremonies. 

Lord Mayor of Liverpool, Councillor Ron Gould, said:- "It's going to be enlightening to meet these veterans and hear their first hand experiences of D-Day.

I think it's very important that we keep history alive so that future generations can learn about the sacrifices that thousands of brave soldiers made. 

We owe a huge debt of gratitude to all the heroes and heroines that took part in the war and attending a remembrance service and learning more about what they went through, is a wonderful way for us all to show our respect."


ON 9 June, 45-year old Geoffrey Mitchell from Liverpool, will be joining twenty cyclists to cycle the 500km from Aylesford to the Ardennes in Belgium to raise money for The Royal British Legion's welfare work. The new charity ride, nicknamed the Battle of the Bulge, will depart from Aylesford in Kent on 9 June, arriving at the scene of the famous Battle on the Belgium/Luxembourg border 5 days later. 

The Merseyside Police Sergeant said:- "Taking part in the Aylesford to Ardennes ride is my way of making a contribution to an excellent cause while doing something that I enjoy at the same time. I did the Legion's 'Bike to Brussels' ride last year and visiting the cemeteries outside Ypres brought home to me how much we owe to our Service men and women."

Asked about his training schedule he said:- "I'm what you might call an 'eco-friendly cyclist' - I cycle to work every day! I also do training rides at the week-end and probably cover about 40 - 50 miles every week."

He remarked on the fantastic support he has received from all his friends and relatives, "Everyone has been very encouraging and supportive," he said.

Geoffrey is hoping to raise at least £1,000 for The Royal British Legion, the charity which provides welfare to thousands of people who have served in the British Armed Forces and their dependants.

Russell Thompson, Director of Fundraising at the Legion said, 'Although the Poppy Appeal raised an incredible £21 million last year this is less than half the £50 million the Legion requires to respond to the 300,000 calls for help we receive each year. So we are enormously grateful for the fundraising efforts of Geoffrey who has taken up our cycling challenge. Every penny of the money he raises will go directly towards supporting the Legion's welfare work.' 

Individuals or companies wishing to sponsor Geoffrey can contact him on 07802 948 684.


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