THE ‘humbling’ sight of the D-Day Dodgers marching through Chichester at the weekend saw shoppers line North Street to applaud.
Led by the Rose and Thistle Pipe Band from Waterlooville, veterans from the Italy Star Association took part in an annual parade through the city.
For at least the last 12 years, there has been a reunion of the veterans in Chichester. Many of them are now in their 90s and they took part in the second world war’s Italian campaign.
National chairman of the association Mary Tidy said this year was particularly special as it was the 70th anniversary of the allied forces’ landing back in Europe.
“It was truly a day to remember for everyone,” she said. “It is essential to continue remembering those who fought and gave the ultimate sacrifice so that we may enjoy the freedoms which we do today. Over 30 veterans were able to be part of the parade and weekend and their feelings are as strong as ever.
“The association would like to thank all those who welcome us back each year and ensure that the event runs so smoothly – God willing we will be back next May to celebrate again.”
The parade began at around 2.30pm outside the cathedral. Led by the band, the veterans marched to the Cross and up North Street.
Rodney Duggua, clerk to the city council, said it was a humbling sight to see the veterans and added they were all ‘fiercely proud’ to be known as the ‘D-Day Dodgers’.
The nickname came about because of their already being in Italy at the time of the D-Day landings.
To see a video of the parade, visit www.chichester.co.uk