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Cross Channel Invasion! Military Geology in 1940 & 1944

Poster - Military GeologyThere was a full house in the Upper Library on Thursday 29 September as we welcomed Colonel Edward P F Rose for his talk "Cross Channel Invasion! Military Geology in 1940 & 1944"

During World War II, in the summer of 1940, German Army geologists helped to prepare for an invasion of England from France - the invasion (code named Operation Sea Lion) was cancelled following RAF victory in the aerial Battle of Britain. Later, British Army geologists helped to prepare for the Normandy Landings of June 1944 – arguably the greatest amphibious invasion in history, and the start of an 11-month campaign that culminated in Allied Victory in Europe.

Ted's talk described how geologists on opposing sides contributed to military planning and operations, notably the preparation of specialist maps interpreting beach terrain, groundwater resources, construction materials, and sites for rapid construction of temporary airfields.

The evening began with "Wartime Rations"  and Camp Coffee served in the Lyell Room, and ended with a special display of material from the Library and Archive collections, including the geological maps used by the War Office in planning D-Day.


Read an article by Ted Rose on geological maps and the D-Day Landings

Wartime Rations recipes and photographs

Programme and futher reading

Image Gallery