The cities of Normandy during the 1944 battles
Liberation: August 24, 1944
Deployed units :
1st Battalion Royal Ulster Rifles, 6th Airlanding Brigade, 6th Airborne Division
1er groupement indépendant belge “Brigade Piron”, 6th Airborne Division
Grenadier-Regiment 731, 711. Infanterie-Division
I/Artillerie-Regiment 1711, 711. Infanterie-Division
The commune of Trouville-sur-Mer is successively occupied by the Infanterie-Division from 1940 to January 1941, the 225. Infanterie-Division until June 1941, the 332. Infanterie-Division until January 1942 and finally the 711. Infantry Division.
On 17 August 1944, more than two months after D-Day, the British launched Operation Paddle in the direction of the Seine. The Belgian and Luxembourg soldiers of the “Brigade Piron” (1st Belgian independent group attached to the 6th Airborne Division) are in the front line in the race towards the Seine.
On August 24, two days after the capture of Deauville under the fire of the Germans of the 711. Infantry-Division, the Piron brigade must cross the Touques River but its adversary destroyed the bridges spanning it. Some soldiers swim, others employ makeshift means designed by the sappers. Meanwhile, the German artillery is carrying out several barrage shots in the area. Resistance fighters, already engaged in Deauville to help the Allied soldiers, once again guide the Belgian and Luxembourg soldiers who seize the entire city.
Photo of Trouville-sur-Mer in 1944:
On the beach of Trouville-sur-Mer, in front of the Casino, soldiers share treats with a young child very intimidated. Photo: US National Archives.