Haunting reminder of millions of lives lost in war as artists stencil 9,000 bodies onto Normandy beach to mark Peace Day
- British led project covered the famous coastline in poignant silhouettes
- A team of 500 artists and volunteers contributed the moving installation
By AARON SHARP
- The 'fallen' were left to be washed away by the tide at the end of the day
The project, named, 'The Fallen' is a tribute to the civilians, German forces and Allies who lost their lives during the Operation Neptune landing on June 6, 1944.
The design was the brainchild of Jamie Wardley, 33, and Andy Moss, 50.
Together with a team of volunteers the pair travelled to Arromanches beach, Normandy, to create the silhouettes, which were individually drawn into the sand.
Moving: The Peace Day tribute is a poignant reminder the thousands who died during Operation Overlord
Teamwork: The project was originally made of 60 people, but after locals learned about the tribute they quickly joined in
'You could see the horrific casualty of war when you stood on the cliff looking down at the beach.
'Watching the tide come in and wash the bodies away was symbolic of all the lives lost in all wars, not just during the Normandy Landings.'
Veterans and families, including some who have lost loved ones in recent conflicts have been involved in the project.
Wardley, who has been working with partner since 2009, said: 'We turned up to the beach with a team of 60 people but by the end we had over 500 people taking part.
'There were people from all over the world who had heard about the event and travelled all the way to France to take part.
Achievement: Artists Andy Moss, right and Jamie Wardley, left said they hoped their art would remind people of the value of peace.
'There were others who happened to be walking by and wanted to get involved.
'It showed that people from all over totally understood the message behind it and I found it very overwhelming.
'Some people told us that they had lost family in the Second World War and others said they had lost loved ones in Afghanistan and wanted to pay a tribute to them.
'We finished all the stencils at about 7.30pm and everyone gathered and waited for the tide to come in.
Commando troops from a landing craft arrive on Normandy beaches on D-Day, June 6, 1944