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SOUTHSEA CASTLE AND D-DAY MUSEUM AND OVERLORD EMBROIDERY
Sunday 27 June 2004

We had hoped for one of those glorious sunny summer's days that Southsea is famous for. However, it started wet and with what the Royal Navy euphemistically refers to as 'a stiff breeze'. Fortunately, the rain soon stopped, the roads dried, the sun came out and the breeze became stiffer. None of this prevented twenty-eight Club cars containing seventy-one members and friends from forming a splendid display on the Garden of Hope, which is between Southsea Castle and the D-Day Museum.

Unexpectedly, on one side of our display was a large bouncy castle and the largest car boot sale I have seen while on the other was a live music concert both of which, together with the Castle and the Museum, provided more to do than the time available permitted.

The highlight of the day was the truly magnificent Overlord Tapestry which was displayed in the Museum. It depicts all the significant events of WW2. It is about the same size as the Bayeaux tapestry and every bit as interesting. Supporting it, in the Museum, was an extensive exhibition of WW2 events and memorabilia including a genuine DUKW. A true touch of nostalgia.

Having been engrossed by the Museum's indoor exhibits we then walked the 200 yards, or should I say metres, to Southsea Castle. This was the most heavily fortified of the many Castles built by Henry VIII to protect England while the Pope was encouraging the French and the Spanish to attack us. A walk round the battlements provided wonderful views of the Solent and the Isle of Wight and a bracing experience in the even stiffer breeze. The day was particularly memorable for our Treasurer who watched his very smart Tilley Hat, with chinstrap, develop a mind of its own and disappear over the Castle ramparts, never to be seen again.

However, the day was generally judged a great success with plenty, one could almost say too much, to see and do. The public took a great interest in our cars including one couple who asked to be photographed getting into one car saying 'This one is exactly the same as the car the President of our Country is driven in'. They came from Malawi. The experience obviously made their day and I leave you to muse over which car had attracted their attention.

David Steel - Section Committee Member


Display of cars   Southsea lighthouse
Display of cars with D-Day Museum in background. Photo: Andrew Honour   Southsea lighthouse keeps watch on our cars. Photo: David Steel