Dunkirk Little Ships due in today

IT was described by Churchill as the turning point of the Second World War.The evacuation of thousands of men trapped on the beaches of Dunkirk by the German war machine was one of the war's most significant events.

IT was described by Churchill as the turning point of the Second World War.

The evacuation of thousands of men trapped on the beaches of Dunkirk by the German war machine in 1940 was one of the war's most significant events.

And in recognition of that, Ipswich was today due to welcome the Little Ships which played a vital role in a rescue that ensured Britain's eventual victory.

Organised by The Association of Dunkirk Little Ships in conjunction with the Ipswich branch of the Royal British Legion, the arrival of the Little Ships is designed to act as a poignant celebration of Operation Dynamo.


You may also want to watch:


Robin Vickery, chairman of the Ipswich branch of the Royal British Legion, said: “The Little Ships visited Ipswich in 2002 and we are delighted the Little Ships are returning to Ipswich.

“At the same time as welcoming them to the town we will also be thinking about the sacrifices made at the time of the Dunkirk evacuation.”

Most Read

A thanksgiving service will take place at noon tomorrow beside the Little Ships moored in Ipswich marina. The mayor, the High Sheriff of Suffolk and ex-service representatives will be present. Also present will be Robin Vickery's father Ted.

Robin Vickery said: “We will remember all those who didn't come back and those who died trying to evacuate our servicemen from the beaches.

“Operation Dynamo gave a massive boost to morale of the whole country. It is something that should be remembered and taught to today's youngsters.

“It was a tremendous achievement and without all the efforts put in by the Royal Navy and little ships it would have been a colossal defeat.

“The success of the operation meant we could live to fight another day.”

As featured in The Evening Star this week, Ted Vickery was among those under fire on the beaches.

Robin Vickery said: “I didn't serve in the war but my father did and he was at Dunkirk. He doesn't talk about it much but I suspect what will be going through his mind this weekend will be thoughts of his friends and comrades he left behind.”

Do you know someone with a connection to the Dunkirk rescue operation? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk.

LITTLE ships were due to arrive at port in Ipswich during the late morning today, with the arrivals continuing into the afternoon.

Tonight a reception hosted by mayor Inga Lockington is planned for the Grand Hall of the Corn Exchange for veterans and the crews of the little ships.

Tomorrow there will be a special drumhead (outdoor) service at noon to mark the anniversary of the Dunkirk evacuation outside the Last Anchor restaurant on the Wet Dock island.

The little ships can be visited during the weekend when members of the public can see just how small some of the vessels that took part in the evactuation really were.

The ships are due to leave Ipswich on Monday.

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter