Home > English > NORMANDY > D DAY - BATTLE FOR NORMANDY > D-day and the Battle of Normandy > JUNO BEACH


Tuesday 30 January 2001


Juno beach was at the centre of the British sector ,running between Courseulles and St Aubin. The 3rd division of Canadian infantry landed here. On the way in, some of the smallest landing craft were taking in water due to the rough sea. The men had to be taken into larger neighbouring craft. A major Stackpoole got taken on to an out bound landing craft. No way of persuading the captain to turn round. The major jumped in the sea and swam to shore.
After Omahah beach it suffered the highest losses of 950 men.
The landing had been planned for 7:55 but due to the bad weather was put back till 8.00. This gave the Germans time to recover from the aerial bombardment, and also for the tide to rise and cover the mined obstructions. The sea conditions and the obstructions caused great losses among the landing craft and the first wave of amphibious tanks.
The infantry had to take on the beach defences without much armoured suport
The only German battery in this area was at Beny 5 miles inland. It didn’t play much part in the battle. Courseulles had been turned into a small fortress.
There were 26 small gun emplacements and machine gun nests around it. Berniers and St Aubin were less strongly defended.

Although the first waves of infantry had to fight fierce battles unaided by armour, tanks weren’t far behind and Berniers was liberated by 9.00
Specialised armour was used to good effect here. One obstacle that hadn’t been foreseen was over come by one of these tanks for that very reason. The tank was a FASCINE or log carrier. It was leading a small convoy of tanks towards it’s objective . When they arrived they found that the ditch they had expected, had been filled in. The tank commander could see the grass growing in the sandy soil. Impatient at the hesitation the following tank commander told them to advance. As soon as the fascine started forward it’s nose dipped and the tank slid down into water that was overgrown with rushes and had a light covering of sand. The crew scrambled out and watched the the tank sink leaving just the top of the turret visible. It was found that the ditch was 60 ft wide instead of the 30ft that they had believed. 60 ft was too great a span for the bridges that tanks carried but with the tank in the middle two bridge spans were laid and the advance continued.
The Canadian forces on Juno advanced further than any other force, and linked up with GOLD but not sword. They could have advanced faster but were hampered not so much by the resistance but by traffic congestion on the beach and narrow streets.

The Queens own rifles landed here in the first wave. They lost half of their men.
An anti air craft gun on a ship knocked out the German gun emplacement.
In the next wave, the Canadian regiment called "La Chaudiere" or the boiler landed.
Bernieres was taken by 9:30

Eastern limit of Juno Beach.

The rocks off the shore made the sea very dangerous for small landing craft. Many were taking water and the men were taken on board larger vessels that passed.
A major Stackpoole was picked up by a boat going out to sea. When he realised he was going away from the shore he jumped over board and swam ashore.

taken by land by 48th commando landed at Juno Beach.
The attack was launched the morning of 7th. The infantry couldn’t make way against the machine guns and barbed wire . Tanks were called up. When they blew a hole in the defences the Canadians rushed through with loud cries; The Germans surrendered immediately.

The 48 TH Canadians and 41st British joined up here on the 7th.

The western limit of sword beach
The 41st commando landed here .
Whilst advancing through Lion sur mer they suffered one of the rare air attacks from the luftwafer.

Betwwen Lion sur mer and Luc sur mer a Churchill Tank Offered by Gen Ian harris commander on D Day of the 2nd Royal Ulster Rifles

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