Video: beacon lit in Burgess Hill to commemorate 80th anniversary of D-Day

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Burgess Hill commemorated the 80th anniversary of D-Day this week with the lighting of a special beacon in town.

Hundreds turned out to witness the spectacle at 9.15pm in St John’s Park.

The evening featured a community picnic from 6pm with a fish and chip van, as well as music, dance, entertainment and readings, to commemorate the largest naval, air and land operation in history.

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A town council spokesperson said before the event: “Thanks to Burgess Hill Bonfire Society for supporting the event, taking the lead with lighting the beacon and providing their BBQ for residents to purchase from.”

The lighting of the beacon to commemorate the 80th anniversary of D-Day at St John's Park, Burgess Hill, on Thursday, June 6, 2024The lighting of the beacon to commemorate the 80th anniversary of D-Day at St John's Park, Burgess Hill, on Thursday, June 6, 2024
The lighting of the beacon to commemorate the 80th anniversary of D-Day at St John's Park, Burgess Hill, on Thursday, June 6, 2024

From 6.30pm the St John’s Church Bell Ringers tolled for remembrance. There were also stalls or displays from the Armed Forces and Veterans Breakfast Club, Burgess Hill Academy PTA, the Heritage and History Association, Burgess Hill Girlguiding and Burgess Hill District Lions. The bonfire society supported the road closures for a parade from the War Memorial at 8.15pm with Burgess Hill Marching Youth leading it across the park for the formal commemoration. Sussex singers Susan Fleet MBE and Helen Underwood-Lewis also performed at the event.

The council said there was a Special Youth Council in the Council Chamber at 10.45am to share the stories of those who landed at Normandy beaches with representatives from Burgess Hill Heritage and History Association in attending.