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IPFS News Link • History

D-Day revealed in colour: Rare photos and historians' painstaking detective work...

•, By Dianne Apen

Using pictures and testimony from the Imperial War Museum archives, D-Day and Normandy: A Visual History by Anthony Richards shows how Operation Overlord unfolded on June 6, 1944.

The shots, published chronologically for the first time ever, have brought to life one of the key turning points of the Second World War.

Fascinating snaps show Winston Churchill visiting the battlefield in Normandy, troops pouring on to the beaches after landing during the biggest military operation in history, and members of the Women's Auxiliary Air Force (WAAF) packing parachutes for airborne troops.

Details about the day were cobbled together using official war photographers' notes, often hastily scribbled in the midst of battle.  

Mr Richards said: 'There is surely no better way to understand an event of such scale as D-Day than to perceive it through the eyes and words of those who were actually there. 

'The museum is incredibly fortunate to hold an unmatched collection of written testimony and photography recording the event. 

'The Allies were acutely aware of the historical importance that would be attached to the landings and so made sure that the events were covered as far as was realistically possible in the circumstances by both film and still photography.'