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Downham Market marks 80th anniversary of D-Day landings





Downham residents paid tribute to those involved in the D-Day landings by joining in with national beacon lighting ceremonies.

Downham Town Council hosted the commemoration on Thursday, thanking all the volunteers who supported the evening, including the Town Crier, Ray Wales, who led the event commemorating 80 years since the Normandy landings.

Tesco supported the event with alternative cake provisions.

The beacon was lit by veteran Jonathan Day. Picture: Downham Town Council
The beacon was lit by veteran Jonathan Day. Picture: Downham Town Council

The evening started with town’s air cadets marching up the hill at St Edmund’s Church, followed by a Singers Inspired performance.

Next was the cutting of the commemorative cake, supplied by Cream Me Up Scotty.

Father Mather reflected on the losses endured by families during the Second World War, including the children of those who fought or supported the war efforts, which are still present community.

Downham mayor Cllr Barry Hobbs speaks at the event. Picture: Downham Town Council
Downham mayor Cllr Barry Hobbs speaks at the event. Picture: Downham Town Council

The new Downham mayor, Cllr Barry Hobbs, paid tribute, while Jonathan Day, a veteran of 35 years, honored local veterans and lit the beacon at 9:15pm.

The event closed with the air cadets marching back down the hill at St Edmund’s.

A town council spokesperson said: “It is hard to say that it was an enjoyable evening given the significance of what was being remembered but the Downham community proudly remembered the sacrifices of many who allow us to enjoy the freedoms we have today.”

Mr Day advised veterans in the town that each Tuesday, Downham Library - between 10.30am and 12.30pm - hosts a safe, friendly and warm environment where they can talk to each other, with signposting on offer.

Veteran Jonathan Day speaks at the 80th anniversary event. Picture: Downham Town Council
Veteran Jonathan Day speaks at the 80th anniversary event. Picture: Downham Town Council

There is also a drop-in service on the second Saturday of every month, from 10:15am-12:15pm, in the Downham and Clackclose Conservative Club.

Air cadets march through town. Picture: Downham Town Council
Air cadets march through town. Picture: Downham Town Council
Singers Inspired performed at the event. Picture: Downham Town Council
Singers Inspired performed at the event. Picture: Downham Town Council
The beacon was lit on Thursday evening. Picture: Downham Town Council
The beacon was lit on Thursday evening. Picture: Downham Town Council

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