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


Thursday 25 January 2001

Gold beach was the nearest British sector beach to the Americans. It stretched 5miles from La Riviere to le Hamel.
It was defended by two batteries of four 4 inch guns at Ver a mile or so inland, and several strong points on the dunes behind the beach.
The most important of these were at La Riviere and Le Hamel were anti tank guns were positioned to take the beach in cross fire.
The Germans had been confident that a landing would only be attempted at high tide and had positioned the beach guns so that they could only fire on the beach above high water mark. This allowed the invaders a few minutes grace after jumping from the landing craft, before coming under enemy fire. The pre landing bombing had left the defences untouched but the special armour proved successful in piercing the Atlantic wall. Many of the first wave of tanks were put out of action by the two beach guns.
The position at La Riviere was knocked out by a few well aimed shots from a CRAB tank taking advantage of the limited field of fire.
At La Riviere , with the German position silenced , the landing went rapidly ahead. The flail tanks had cleared the barbed wire and mine fields and had set of down the road inland. Further along the flail tanks pulled aside to let a log carrying tank fill in a tank trap.
After one hour on land the Gold beach forces had penetrated 1 mile inland.
At Le hamel the gun was in action until well into the afternoon. Three flail tanks were knocked out by the gun before a fourth managed to get past the gun. This tank kept the g occupied for long enough to allow two companies of the Hampshire to get past it and take Asnelles. Le Hamel wasn’t taken till late in the afternoon.
By the evening of D day the Gold beach forces had linked up with the Canadians at Juno, and reached the outskirts of Bayeux. It had been planned to take Bayeux on D day but at least the Germans couldn’t use it as a base for counter attacks.
In the west they fulfilled their objective of taking Arromanches intact but the link up with the Americans wasn’t complete till D + 2.
They had achieved a large part of their objective at a cost of 400 men.

Rectangular radar and parabolic radar. Defended by two 3in guns. 3 heavy machine guns, an anti tank gun and a mortar.
On the beach was a 2 in gun.

The landing at St Come was half an hour after Ver sur mer. It Took several hours to over come the station before the advance on Arromanche could continue.

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