This Bank Holiday weekend, thousands set for the Liverpool docks in celebration of 70th Anniversary of the Battle of the Atlantic. Huge crowds arrived on Sunday as the Princess Royal arrived to lay a wreath at Liverpool Pier Head’s British Merchant Navy Memorial. Princess Anne payed her respects to British, Dutch, Norwegian, Belgian and Polish merchant navies, as well as others who also participated. The memorial took place at the Liverpool Anglican Cathedral, which attracted over 2,300 people, including veterans. War planes and helicopters then flew over the city.
The crowds were also able to see ships, planes and helicopters which fought in the battle, as well as going on board the ships and sitting in the cockpits of the planes. RAF soldiers were also present to talk about the battle and the ships, planes and choppers that played such an important role during the war.
The Battle of the Atlantic, a phrase coined by then British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, was longest continuous military campaign of WWII and the longest and most complex naval battle in history. The UK, as an island nation, depended heavily on imports from overseas, including the US and Canada, in order to keep fighting. Germany, knowing this, decided to blockade imports to Britain, whilst Britain, the US and France tried to block ships providing Germany with arms, food and textiles. Liverpool played a vital role in battle, which is why it was chosen to host the event.