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Visiting the Normandy Invasion Beaches and Battlefields (Kindle)

A Helpful Guide Book for Groups and Individuals

WWII D-Day & Normandy Battlefield Guidebooks Battlefield Guides Normandy Military

By Gareth Hughes
Imprint: Pen & Sword Military
File Size: 165.6 MB (.mobi)
Pages: 174
Illustrations: 100
ISBN: 9781473854345
eBook Released: 21st June 2019


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This splendid and timely book will be invaluable to those visiting the battlefields, sites, museums, memorials and cemeteries of the D-Day Normandy landings. It is intended for those planning and leading school groups and similar parties but is also ideal for individual/family visitors.

Rather than list every site etc it provides realistic itineraries to the best places in the Normandy area. Even these are flexible to allow party leaders suitable discretion.

The author provides helpful information for each site such as its context in the War, visitor orientation, the ‘narrative’ (the essential facts to engage, inform and entertain), suggested activity and relevant photos and maps.

This combines to make every visit of maximum benefit and interest and yet reduce the workload of the party leaders.

There are also valuable tips for lunch breaks, free time ideas and other helpful pointers.

Full of information for anyone who wants to undertake a visit to the places of the Normandy landings.

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On The Old Barbed Wire

This guide-book by Gareth Hughes, is a good, handy sized reference book that’s easy to carry.

World of Warships, April 2020 - reviewed by Charles Waters

Featured as prize in reader competition

Family Tree, January 2020

This is a good read and I will certainly take it with me when I visit Normandy.

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GoodReads, Robert Neil Smith

"An excellent guide for the initiate to D Day and Normandy for the leader of groups to have visited the WW1 battlefields of France and Flanders."

Review by

Royal Hampshire Regiment Museum

A useful, interesting and quite complete guide for the visitor to Normandy.

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Miniaturas JM

This is perfect for anyone with an interest in D-Day who wishes to visit Normandy. It is informative for an enthusiastic amateur, like me, but would elevate any group leader or teacher to a Professor of History level of authority.

Highly recommended.

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Army Rumour Service (ARRSE)

The general planning and travel tips are in themselves very valuable. The author then provides a very good WWII timeline followed by one of the best summaries I have come across of both the world wars... I would still recommend this book as your primary Normandy guide.

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Lars Gyllenhall, Blogger

Visiting the Normandy Invasion Beaches and Battlefields: A Helpful Guide Book for Groups and Individuals offers a pragmatic approach based on the experience of author, who has led many tours of the area. The aim has been to provide a “helpful guide book” for potential visitors planning a trip to Normandy. It will be especially useful for people who may be leading a tour of the area, whether a group of friends or a more organised event such as a school trip. This guides’ strength is the background material that it provides, which is comprehensive without being overwhelming. Ideally this could be read in advance of making the trip and then used to provide background ‘talks’ to your group at the different locations. Even if you have read widely about the battles in Normandy this will be a very useful aide memoire of the salient points that will explain the scene to fellow visitors.

There is a wealth of information here and it will undoubtedly assist any visitor in getting the most out of their trip. Two days of tours are proposed – the U.S. beaches and the British and Canadian beaches and there are suggestions for the length of time you might spend at each location. It would be very easy to adapt the author’s plan to your own particular preferences. I look forward to using it next time I am in Normandy.

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WW2 Today

The publisher has produced an excellent catalogue of battlefield guides, of which this new book is a worthy companion. The author is an educationalist, rather than a former soldier and has produced a guide which is particularly suitable for teachers taking school parties to the battlefields of Normandy, but equally suitable for individuals making the journey – Highly Recommended

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A handy and accessible battlefield companion with much useful information helping you make the most out of your tour & understand what D-Day was about.

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Paul Reed via Twitter

This soft back book published by Pen and Sword Military is written by Gareth Hughes, who is the head of middle school and head of history and politics at Pocklington School near York. The book contains 174 pages of good quality paper with many black and white photographs and maps scattered throughout. Priced at £12.99, this book is aimed mainly at teachers who may want to organise a trip for their students, but can also be used by those who may not have visited before and who are not sure what to visit. The focus of this publication is the five landing beaches of the landings, Utah, Omaha, Juno, Gold and Sword.

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Well timed for this year of the 75th anniversary of D-Day, this neat little paperback provides a good guide for the Normandy Invasion Beaches... Useful for both groups and individuals to plan a trip to Normandy, and handy enough in size to carry with you.

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Military Model Scene, Robin Buckland

Visiting the Normandy Invasion Beaches and Battlefields: A Helpful Guide Book for Groups and Individuals delivers. The itineraries are thorough, but not overwhelming. The guide is beautifully illustrated with black and white photographs on almost every page, detailed endnotes after each itinerary, and eight military maps that highlight particular actions. The maps are located with the appropriate text rather than grouped together in a separate section of the book. This cuts down on unnecessary page turning. I highly recommend it to knowledgeable battlefield explorers and general tourists. It has something for everyone.

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 Gareth Hughes

About Gareth Hughes

Gareth Hughes is Head of History at Pocklington School near York. He has led many parties to the Western Front as well as to the battlefields of North America, Russia, Normandy etc. He has identified a real need for a guide book for party leaders.

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