The cities of Normandy during the 1944 battles
Liberation: July 9, 1944
4th Battalion, Wiltshire Regiment, 129th Infantry Brigade, 43rd Infantry Division
5th Battalion, Wiltshire Regiment, 129th Infantry Brigade, 43rd Infantry Division
5th Battalion, Dorsetshire Regiment, 130th Infantry Brigade, 43rd Infantry Division
I/SS Panzergrenadier-Regiment 21, 10. S.S. Panzer-Division “Frundsberg”
II/SS Panzergrenadier-Regiment 22, 10. S.S. Panzer-Division “Frundsberg”
At the beginning of July 1944, the British had not yet seized Caen. General Montgomery launched several operations to break the German defense line but without major successes: his opponents resisted despite the abundance of bombing and the means committed.
On July 8, 1944, a new offensive began, called Operation Charnwood, preceded by one of the most violent aerial bombardments of the Battle of Normandy. The commune of Fontaine-Etoupefour is one of the objectives of the 129th Infantry Brigade (43rd “Wessex” Infantry Division) in order to flank-keep the take of the aerodrome of Carpiquet by the Canadians. But the Germans of the 10.S. Panzer-Division “Frundsberg” offer a fierce resistance and the British struggle to break through the front line. The 4th and 5th Battalions, Wiltshire Regiments, reached Fontaine-Etoupefour and took possession of it only the following day, July 9th.
From 10 to 11 July, fighting continued for the 5th Battalion Dorsetshire Regiment (129th Infantry Brigade) at the castle of Fontaine-Etoupefour, located to the south-east of the village.