Guzzi Enthusiasts @ D-Day 80th Anniversary 2024

Accommodation (5 nights) Tuesday 4th to Sunday 9th June 2024:

Hôtel de La Croix de Malte
5 Rue des Halles
50100 Cherbourg en Cotentin
France

There is a free garage for motorcycles and bicycles available upon reservation.

Hotel website: Accueil new 2
Official D-Day 80 website: 1944 - 2024: 80th Anniversary of D-Day and the Battle of Normandy : Normandy Tourism, France

Using Route Nationale N13, the Hôtel de La Croix de Malte is ideally located for visiting Sainte-Mère-Église where the paratroopers of the American 82nd and 101st Airborne Divisions parachuted into Normandy on the night of 5th/6th June 1944, Pointe du Hoc and the American landings on Utah Beach and Omaha Beach.

If you would like to attend this event with fellow Moto Guzzi enthusiasts, please book directly with the Hôtel de La Croix de Malte or use your preferred hotel booking platform. You don’t have to stay 5 nights, choose the length of time that suits you best. Please let us know if you’ve booked so we have an idea of numbers attending.

Room availability as of 26th September 2023:
3 x double rooms
2 x twin rooms
3 x superior double rooms
4 x single rooms

Points of interest and distances from Cherbourg:

Sainte-Mère-Église = 23 miles. See: Accueil - English | Airborne
Parc Naturel Régional des Marais du Cotentin et du Bessin = 30 miles.
Utah Beach Landing Museum, Sainte-Marie-du-Mont = 32 miles. See: https://utah-beach.com/en
Pointe du Hoc = 47 miles. See: Pointe du Hoc Ranger Monument | American Battle Monuments Commission
Omaha Beach Memorial, Avenue de la Libération, Saint-Laurent-sur-Mer = 51 miles. See: Home - Musée Mémorial d'Omaha beachMusée Mémorial d'Omaha beach & Normandy American Cemetery | American Battle Monuments Commission
Bayeux = 58 miles
Arromanches-les-Bains = 64 miles. See: https://musee-arromanches.fr/en/histoire
Pegasus Bridge, Ranville = 83 miles. See: Pegasus Bridge – Mémorial-Pégasus
Merville-Franceville-Plage = 87 miles. See: https://www.batterie-merville.com/en/merville-battery

Room availability as of 6th October 2023:

3 x double rooms
2 x twin rooms
1 x superior double room (was 3)
4 x single rooms

It is a very interesting area to visit, I have been a few times, but I tend to avoid festivals like this as the re-enactors are not my thing , I have found that out of season its nice and quite, and you get time to think, I usually take a few books with me to read as Is walk around, last time I visited I took my Irish Nephew on pillion en route to a daughters wedding in Italy
walking around the bridge Museum, he was surprised to see a family connection, his Grandmothers brother, an irish Para ( all my family connections are Great war) this year he returned with his dad, my younger brother and visited the grave
one thing he commented on, was how much better illustrated the various sites where,with interactive stuff and better signage in those intervening 6 years
of course when I visited many years ago I often found myself in company of the men who had fought there, and my parents generation were so close to it
My Brother was very impressed by the educational value of it as well, and seeing a German radar station that was not destroyed deliberately to confuse the enemy troops

I must be very old ( i am) but when travelling I prefer to read up and take several books written by those that were there and later guide books, so much easier to read if its bright and sunny, and no batteries

but I would recommend this tour to any newbies who have not visited, you will get so see so many things , also the Bayeux tapestry is worth a visit ( an Uncle who landed on Sword was a bit disappointed to see it, when he had R and R ) he found out later it was a a replica, as fatty Goering had a habit of nicking nice stuff for Karinhall , his high end drug den

its worth doing a bit of research first so you dont miss anything, the endless parade of re enactors who are usually much too fat and too old can overpower the dignity of the occasion
watching the longest day is a good start, quite a few of the actors were there the first time
and they even located a tank in the sand and re used it, especially the American who climbed he cliffs for real

I can reccomend this documentary, although American, it brings out many unknown facts
I generally find the american stuff awful, and they gabble

Professor Richard Holmes very excellent War Walks covers Operation Goodwood
and much more
and Pegasus bridge by Stephen Ambrose is a must read, and honest author who does not try to put himself in view all the time, his chance meeting with John Howard started the book off, and the interviews with those men are honest and reliable
oddly the gliders were manufactured in the Area I live, after Airpseed realised they did not have the capacity in London and the risk of bombing, moved by road in sections then assembled at Rissington, many were then flown from neighboring airfields built expressly for D Day
I take people around on tours of the area, many having been born and bred here have no idea of the history they walk past every day
Even Jeremy Clarksons farm was a wartime reserve airfield

and on the tube of you I would recommend watching the documentary made 20 year later featuring General Eisenhower

I would avoid many of the other so called channels documenting the invasion, as many of the commentators gabble, or are too fond of their own voices and new found fame, and rarely give you the most cogent facts, just repeating rubbish you can see elsewhere interspersed with video clips, usually of the wrong battles and wrong fighting vehicles or troops
growing up with uncles and Aunts who had been directly involved, I took time to listen to them, and it irritates me when some university educated idiot repeats the same mistakes time and time again

So if you have never been book early, and get to see some amazing bits of history
and fat blokes waddling around in ill fitting uniforms ( my dad would have a fit, at 90 he can still wear his REME overalls)
A tour like this is a great way to start you off, and like me you will no doubt return to explore further
seeing the filed where John Howards Pilot Landed the glider right on the fence line, makes you realise how much skill and luck was involved, and the cool head of Sgt Wallwork of the glider Pilot regiment, flying an unpowered wooden glider at night and landing exactly where asked
he hit Normandy first, well his head did as he shot through the screen
a few seconds later he was up and running and bringing in supplies

you can also Thank our King, for his prompt action in saving the original bridge, and starting off the creating of the excellent museum, a mere 100 metres away from the replacement
which is very similar just a bit longer

a replica glider sits not far away, today a Horse would not be allowed to fly, virtually everything about it fails the modern flying rules !!!
many parts of origional gliders are in the museum for you to examine, as a skilled tradesman that was mecca to me

Rapheal, many thanks for the info, much appreciated.

Room availability as of 8th October:
2 x double rooms (was 3)
2 x twin rooms
1 x superior double room (was 3)
4 x single rooms

I would urge any one thinking of making this trip to go, the prices are very reasonable, and its going to be packed
I went on a coach tour many many years ago, but they seemed to spend all day rushing around, and the guide just reeled out stuff, luckily I was next to one of the old and bold, and he sat and chatted to me
a big learning curve
after that I joined a walking tour, with a fantastic chap ex forces , and learnt more
then read up and studied even more and started to go on my own, so that I could spend time looking at things
I will likely be in Holland at Overloon about this time
I forgot to mention that Proffesor Holmes made a very interesting TV series, its on you tube somewhere
I used it along with his guide to tour France, and trace my grandfathers walking tour from Mons to Cambrai, then back up ending in Germany where he stayed for many years with the BAOR and made lifelong friends with a German family
my next visit to Normandy will be to pay my respects to Rex Whistler, one of the greatet artist of the last century, and a genuinely modest and nice man

Room availability as of 17th October:
1 x double room (was 3)
2 x twin rooms
NIL x superior double room (was 3)
3 x single rooms (was 4)

As of 20th October, Hôtel de La Croix de Malte is now fully booked for the period 4th to 9th June 2024.

A search of all the major hotel booking platforms indicates that there’s still (mainly apartment type) accommodation available in the Cherbourg area during that period.

1 Like

Although not strictly necessary for this area in France, we thought it advisable to obtain Crit’Air (Air Quality Certificate) stickers. With many vehicles expected to visit the Normandy D-Day 80th Anniversary temporary emission controls may be introduced at short notice.

For details of the Crit’Air scheme and to apply for stickers see the official French government website: https://www.certificat-air.gouv.fr

You will need to provide a photo or scan of your vehicles V5C Registration Certificate.

D-Day 80th Anniversary Five Pound Coin. Details: http://www.d-day5pound.com

With just 3 weeks to go until the D-Day 80th Anniversary we need to confirm the contact details for the Moto Guzzi enthusiasts that have booked accommodation in the Cherbourg area.

Please email your contact details to chris.jessop @ ukbuellgroup .co.uk