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Battle of Normandy


6 June – 30 August 1944

WW2 - Battle of Normandy

Following D-Day a bridgehead was formed across the five beaches, and the Battle of Normandy began. The Americans built up forces for the advance on Cherbourg, meanwhile General Bernard Montgomery’s 21st Army Group of British and Canadians engaged the Germans between Bayeux and Caen.

D-day assault routes into Normandy

D-day assault routes into Normandy

Troops advancing in Normandy

Troops advancing in Normandy

The Facts


  • Date: 6 June – 30 August 1944
  • Location: Northern France
Countries Involved
United States
United Kingdom
Canada
Free French Forces
Polish Forces
French Resisitance
Australia
Free Belgian Forces
Free Czechoslovakia
Free Greek Forces
Free Luxembourgish Forces
Free Dutch Forces
New Zealand
Free Norwegian Forces
Germany
Countries Commanders
Dwight D. Eisenhower
Arthur Teddy
Bernard Montgomery
Trafford Leigh-Mallory
Bertram Ramsay
Gerd von Rundstedt
Erwin Rommel
Number of Casualties
Between 225,606 - 226,386 Between 400,000 - 530,000

Battle result: Decisive Allied victory

The fighting moved into the ‘Bocage’ countryside; thick hedgerows on high banks which favoured the defender and made ambush easy. Casualties in these inland battles were high: the fighting around Caen was called ‘Monty’s Meatgrinder’ by the infantry. In many front line units casualties were as high as those suffered by the infantry in WW1, but fewer men died because of advances in medicine and the ability to evacuate men from the battlefield quickly. Once Cherbourg was taken by the Americans it was found unusable as a port, so they built up forces for a breakout battle, which became Operation Cobra in July 1944. The British launched theirs with Operation Bluecoat and gradually both armies came together in the Falaise Pocket, trying to enclose and trap German forces, which brought the Battle of Normandy to a close in August 1944.

Fire control group

Fire control group

Light bomber with D-Day 'invasion stripes'

Light bomber with D-Day 'invasion stripes'

Helmet and rifle monument to a dead U.S. soldier

Helmet and rifle monument to a dead U.S. soldier

Learn more about this battle on the following Leger Battlefield tours