This 90-minute guided walk “Southampton at War” starts at the Lions by the Bargate and tells the story of the vital role that Southampton has played in battles throughout its history by visiting locations associated with the preparation for war, the defence of the town and the safety of its citizens.
Fighting first Roman, then Viking and Norman invaders, through the wars of the medieval period, embarking soldiers for the battles of Crecy and Agincourt, the Crimea and Boer wars, two world wars and the Falklands. Southampton has been both an obvious target for the enemy, and a port for embarking soldiers.
In particular events of WW2 such as the evacuation of Dunkirk, the devastating bombing of Southampton and the preparations for the Normandy landings on D-Day are explained with reference to individuals and locations in the City.
Southampton continued to play an important role after D-Day by supplying the armed forces in Europe and managing the large numbers of POWs who were brought back to Britain. These events are described and linked to important locations.
This walk includes visits to some of the medieval wine vaults, which were used to great effect as air raid shelters.
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