Sunday, 31 January 2016

Walking along the beach and discovering stories from the past.

At the same time as I sat at work with the blinds closed to shut out the low sun, my husband and Tavi were walking along the beach enjoying the waves, sunshine and lovely colours! At least he captured this to share with me and you!





In my spare time this week I have been reading about West Bay and the neighbouring village of Burton Bradstock's role during the second World War. On two separate dates in June 1942 over 4,000  troops and 58 tanks were landed on this stretch of coast. The  exercise called Yukon was a rehearsal for the operation to land on the beaches of Dieppe, which had similar huge cliffs and beaches. The first exercise here was such a disaster, due to poor communication and troops landing at the wrong beaches, that it had to be repeated 11 days later - this time more successfully. 

The residents of West Bay were evacuated for a few days, unfortunately not everyone was moved out and there was some alarm to see soldiers passing their windows. It was with great relief that the residents discovered that they were Canadian soldiers! There is a film and images of similar exercises here

The actual raid on Dieppe took place on the 19th August 1942, out of the 6,000 troops that landed 4,000 were either killed, injured, or taken prisoner. It is believed that many lessons were learnt from this dreadful carnage that helped in the planning of  D Day two years later -  for more details see the Canadian raid of Dieppe.

The Germans had identified this area of the coast as a good location to invade England, Even today there are still many bunkers, anti tank defences and guard boxes to be seen along the shore. Later in the war many Americans were stationed in the area, before embarking for France.



By the time the weekend rolled around, the weather had turned. We had some bracing walks, watching the waves crashing on the shore, as we walked away we could taste the salt on our lips. Our son and his girlfriend were down for the weekend. After we had dropped them back to the station, we visited Charmouth beach on the way home.  I was trying to capture the spray on the cliffs and didn't notice the person standing close to the waves. I wonder what they were doing! As always the light creates some great moments.




I was so pleased to see that others want to join in with  "Through the garden gate" each month. It will be fun to share the highlights and problems in our gardens.

Until next time.
Sarah x

43 comments:

  1. Wonderful photographs, Sarah, and your husband, too! An interesting history lesson, too, though not one I like to dwell on--the War. It must have been a terrible, terrible time for all of Europe. While we contributed in helping to end it, we did not suffer in the ways your parents and family did here in the US.

    I just saw the photo of your lovely Arbor. I look forward to your gardening posts.

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  2. Gorgeous photos, and what interesting history. I've just been reading a book about the occupation of Guernsey during the war, it's been fascinating. Wishing you a good week, and I hope you're able to get out and enjoy the sea. CJ xx

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  3. Your photos always make me breathless to visit the Dorset coast Sarah. That first photo is JUST breath-taking!!x

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  4. Dear Sarah,

    wonderful photos, they are warm and full of atmosphere, and an interesting story about this beach. I thank all these people who exerciced the landing at Ohama, Utah and Gold beach in the Normandie because with this operation they all set us free.That was a dark, a very dark time for my country, thank God, these times are over.Thanks to all who believe in freedom.
    A wonderful week for you, dear Sarah, Barbaraxxx

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  5. Thanks for sharing more wonderful photos and interesting history, Sarah. I am grateful the shores you showed no longer have to be the platforms for launching or repelling attacks! Wishing you a happy week, and please give Tavi some love pats from me :) xx

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  6. I have always loved where you take me, Sarah. What raw beauty to behold! Tavi looks very happy!

    Enjoy your new week of February! Anita

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  7. Amazing Grace!
    Such beauty leaves me breathless in your sea journey .
    I have been creating French sea art, there is a soulful space between me and the sea.

    XxDore

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  8. A fascinating post, Sarah, with gorgeous photos, especially the first one. Glad you got out and enjoyed the spectacular scenery.
    Cathy x

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  9. The extreme contrast in colours between the early photos and the latter brings to mind the expression 'what a difference a day makes'.
    I think that person was doing the same as you 'capturing the moment' but in a different way.
    Those war years must have been unimaginably difficult for both the residents and soldiers alike.

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  10. Interesting history story about West Bay, even more interesting because we once were camping on the cliff with a view on West Bay. Tavi is such a lucky one to go to the beach as often as he wants too, one of the best places a dog can run and play. Beautiful photos of sea and cliffs.

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    1. I shall have to include the camp site I think you stayed at in one of my posts! Sarah x

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  11. Hey Sarah,
    Some stunning shots of your beautiful coastline. Tavi is a beauty!
    Leanne xx

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  12. Hi Sarah, Such beautiful pictures. :) I hope you had a chance to go to the sea too! We have the same along this part of the coast, Brixham, Slapton, Torquay. A sad reminder of what happened in the past.
    Is this the place they filmed Broadchurch? it looks very similar. xx

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    1. Yes Broadchurch is filmed in West Bay. They will be filming the third series here in the summer. Sarah x

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  13. Lovely photos, I'm so in love with Tavi! xx

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  14. Tavi is adorable! thanks for the gorgeous photos!

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  15. The shore photos in the sunshine are gorgeous--those cliffs just glow. And their sheer vertical faces, with layer on layer of geological history, fascinate me. The world war II history is an added bonus. Thank you.

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  16. Lovely photos Sarah. Thank you for the history lesson, it was very interesting. Tavi looks like he has spotted something good :o) x

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  17. I'm watching the PBS series "Broadchurch" and these cliffs reminded me immediately of that! Thank you for the fascinating history lessons here…loved it. And I'll bet Tavi loves those walks!

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    1. They are the same cliffs as featured on Broadchurch as it is filmed here.
      Sarah x

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  18. Wonderful photos, Sarah! Tell your husband he did a great job with the camera. As for Dieppe, it was a horrendous loss of Canadians. There is still much discussion about it here. I didn't know about the training that happened prior to the actual event though. Thanks for sharing that information!

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    1. I knew you would be interested in the Canadian connection. Unfortunately what happened at Dieppe isn't so well known here. Sarah x

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  19. I love your photos. A sunny beach is always nice but I love the fog and mist of turned weather.

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  20. Wonderful dramatic photos, especially that first one! Still stormy here in Scotland..

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  21. It is amazing to think that even a beach can hold so much of our country's history isn't it. xx

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  22. I was fascinated to read about your local area during WW2. How lovely to be able to take bracing walks by the coast at this time of year, I enjoy walking on a beach in such conditions but don't often get the chance to due to not living adjacent to the coast. xx

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  23. I had never heard about the raid on Dieppe and the rehearsals at West Bay. So many lives lost. Thank you for sharing. Blogging certainly is a great education. Hope you get to enjoy some sun this week. Barbara xx

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  24. Very interesting post Sarah and wonderful wintry shots of the beach.

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  25. Dear Sarah,

    The photos of the beach are so beautiful and would really be a great start to the day walking along the beach with sweet Tavi.
    Also enjoyed hearing about the history here and thanks for sharing.
    Happy week
    hugs
    Carolyn

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  26. Your seaside walks are always wonder full. I missed your through the garden gate but being a year round gardener myself I may have to pop in. I was clearing lettuce that had gone to seed this weekend and prepping to sow carrot seed this week. We have snow peas in abundance right now. So yummy.

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  27. We were in Dieppe not long ago and saw the little beach where the Canadian soldiers landed, and their memorial. Very poignant.

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  28. Beautiful photo's of your coastline! Your husband is a great photographer. I enjoyed your story on the WW2. Interesting to read.

    Have a lovely evening!

    Madelief x

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  29. Wonderful! I adore those colours.....and walking in the footprints of others from our past.....

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  30. wow, gorgeous photos. Your little Westie is adorable.

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  31. I enjoyed the history as well as the beautiful photos. I like the arms spread wide open - seems a joyful moment. Best, Kim

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  32. Such beautiful beaches and scenery .. You really are lucky to live near the sea.
    Very interesting history you shared with us Sarah.
    Tavi i am sure enjoys his walks too.
    The man with arms open, I think maybe thanking heaven above for such beauty.!!
    Thank you dear Sarah.. for your encouragement to continue blogging..
    the new rules of Google are confusing.. but i will get there.
    As always love reading your posts.
    Happy wed. Val xxxx

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  33. Wonderful stormy beaches!
    I had no idea that West Bay had trained the Canadians who went on the 1942 Dieppe raid.

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  34. Oh my heart skips a beat with your lovely sea photos!! Very interesting history in that area. A very cute friend you got, this is a great photo of him! Thank you for sharing.

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  35. My gosh, the first picture is just so beautiful! Love how the foam is captured against the sky, gorgeous!



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  36. What beautiful photographs, I especially love the first one with the tumbling waves against the orange sand, such contrast! I haven't been near the sea for several weeks, still trying to get rid of my flu, it's been a hard one to shake off this time. Have a lovely weekend. Sharon

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  37. Those pictures...this nature...the sea...I must say WOW! Beautiful!
    Have a great weekend, take care.
    Titti

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  38. The photo's are all great but that first one is stunning.
    I rather think this weekend may have been a little wet ... and a little windy!

    Have a peaceful Sunday

    All the best Jan

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  39. Love the ocean! These are wonderful photos capturing just the right shots! Thanks for sharing!
    Hugs,
    Jody

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