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Oakham community marks 80th anniversary of D-Day





Music was at the heart of events to commemorate the 80th anniversary of the D-Day landings.

Rutland Concert Band held at concert at All Saints’ Church in Oakham on Thursday evening (June 6) - 80 years after the Allied Forces mounted a large-scale invasion of France.

Nearly 200 people attended the concert which raised £672 for the Royal British Legion’s Poppy Appeal.

Rutland Concert Band performed at All Saints' Church. Photo: Adam Lowe
Rutland Concert Band performed at All Saints' Church. Photo: Adam Lowe

After the concert many of those who attended walked the short distance to Cutts Close where the Lord Lieutenant of Rutland, Dr Sarah Furness, lit a beacon at 9.15pm. Uppingham resident David Kirk played the bagpipes alongside Piper Bill - a Canadian-born bagpiper.

Commemorative events continued across the weekend with a 1940s evening at Victoria hall on Saturday hosted by Rutland Lions and a service at All Saints’ Church on Sunday. The activities were rounded off with music in the park at Cutts Close on Sunday afternoon when vintage singer Alan Jackson and Marlow and Smith took to the bandstand.

The 80th anniversary of D-Day was a chance for people to reflect on the sacrifices made by those who fought in the Second World War. It was particularly poignant for those whose family members were part of D-Day, including David Penfold from Cottesmore whose father was a Royal Marine.

People enjoyed picnics while they listened to the music. Photo: Chris Lowndes
People enjoyed picnics while they listened to the music. Photo: Chris Lowndes

Arthur Penfold first joined the marines as a 17-year-old in December 1936. He became part of the 1st Special Service Brigade which landed on Sword beach on June 6, 1944.

David said: “During the morning of June 6 the commando fought its way to meet with airborne troops at Pegasus Bridge and marched over the bridge under enemy fire.

“During the battle for Caen about 10 days later, Arthur was wounded by shrapnel in his left arm and on the top of his head. The wounds became gangrenous and he was brought back to Britain on an American tank landing craft that was fired on by German E boats.

“He was taken to an American hospital where he was treated with penicillin that was not available in British hospitals. This saved his arm and possibly his life. At this stage he had only been married for six months.

Arthur Penfold served in the Royal Marines on D-Day.
Arthur Penfold served in the Royal Marines on D-Day.

“After recovering from his wounds he spent the remainder of the war in North Wales and was invalided out of the Marines before the end of 1945.”

Bagpiper David Kirk. Photo: Adam Lowe
Bagpiper David Kirk. Photo: Adam Lowe
The beacon lighting in Cutts Close. Photo: Adam Lowe
The beacon lighting in Cutts Close. Photo: Adam Lowe
Crowds listen to the music. Photo: Chris Lowndes
Crowds listen to the music. Photo: Chris Lowndes
Sue Wood and Emma Wood. Photo: Chris Lowndes
Sue Wood and Emma Wood. Photo: Chris Lowndes
Marlow and Smith perform at Cutts Close in Oakham. Photo: Chris Lowndes
Marlow and Smith perform at Cutts Close in Oakham. Photo: Chris Lowndes

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