France - UK

Normandy mayor furious as Prince Charles cancels D-Day visit.

The D-Day landings
The D-Day landings

The mayor of Merville in Normandy is furious that Britain’s Prince Charles has cancelled a visit to the village planned to commemorate the 70th anniversary of D-Day in June.


British parachutists fought a legendary battle in the village at the time of the D-Day landings.

The village children have apparently spent weeks learning the words to "God Save the Queen" in preparation for the visit scheduled for 5th June.

As well as being heir to the British throne, Charles is also Colonel-in-Chief of Britain's famous Parachute Regiment and Merville features on the regiment's 'Battle Honours', the list of battle sites emblazoned on its colours.

"I must admit I blew a fuse when I learned he was not coming," said Mayor Olivier Paz. He plans to travel to Clarence House in London on Wednesday, to deliver to Charles personally a letter of protest signed by 1,000 people.

Merville was targeted on D-Day because it was the site of major German gun battery. The British paras succeeded in putting it out of action, but only 75 men out of 700 survived the operation.

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