Ceremony honours WWII 'secret army'

Dignitaries at a similar ceremony at the Memorial du Mont-Valérien in September 2018

Princess Anne among the dignitaries at an event to commemorate bravery of SOE agents during World War Two

Connexion readers are invited to join HRH Princess Anne at a ceremony to honour the bravery of Churchill's so-called 'secret army' in France on May 7.

The annual ceremony organised by the 'Fédération Nationale Libre Résistance' will take place at 12.30pm and is open to members of the public. It will commemorate the 78th anniversary of the parachute landing of Georges Bégué, the first SOE F-section agent to arrive in France from the UK.

'Special Operations Executive' agents worked under cover gathering information about Nazi movements and plans, transmitting it to London by illegal radio transmissions. They were trained in the UK before being parachuted into France, where 104 of them died during World War Two.

This year also marks the 75th anniversary of the D-day landings.

People are advised to arrive early as there will be road closures. The ceremony will last until 13h50. The dress code is formal and veterans are requested to wear medals, but no prior subscription is necessary.

It will be followed by a reception at the Château de Valençay and lunch, and if you would like to attend these events, you will need to subscribe as places are limited.

There will also be a full programme of events in Valençay, Indre, on May 6, including a tour of the parachute landing fields, lectures, talks and a restaurant meal in the evening. More information about these events, plus a form to reserve your place at them can be found on libreresistance.fr or by emailing bill.beauclerk@wanadoo.fr

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