24th Oct, 2016

Ellis helps veterans pay respect

Aaron Wise 26th Jun, 2015 Updated: 20th Oct, 2016

A YOUNG Pershore boy was paid a visit by D-Day veterans who shared their wartime stories before handing him a wreath to lay where the landings took place in Northern France.

Eleven-year-old Elllis Morris was tasked with undertaking the ceremony to put the wreath in place on the Pegasus Bridge memorial.

It came after veterans went along to St Nicholas C of E Middle School to bring the Normandy landings to life to just under 50 year seven pupils – they then travelled across the English Channel on Sunday (June 21).

Ellis, a keen historian, went on the school trip for six days of exploring the region’s history, language and culture after his mum Mandy Morris, worked tirelessly to bring the real human experience of the D-Day landings to the pupils, by heroic Vale veterans.

Bill Brotherton, 90, who was born and lived in Offenham, came forward to speak to the pupils on Thursday (June 18), along with Mrs Pat Stearne, 86, from Evesham.

She told the D-Day story of her late husband, Ray Stearne and Ken Tallis, Chairman of the Royal British Legion of the Pershore and District Branch, presented the wreath to Ellis.

The pupils heard how during the D-Day landings, Mr Brotherton operated one of the landing craft that took troops from their ship right on to the Normandy shore among heavy shelling, torpedoes and gunfire, and during their trip, the pupils visited the spot where Bill brought troops ashore at Gold Beach, near Arromanches.

Head of year seven, Bex Chatterton, said: “We are all honoured Bill Brotherton and other veterans have invested so much time in bringing to life the real human experience of the D-Day landings for all our year seven pupils and we thank The Royal British Legion for donating the wreath.

“It is fantastic how Ellis and his mum, with such infectious enthusiasm, have worked to make all this all possible.

“It supports everything that we aim to achieve in school, which is to inspire all our young pupils and encourage their curiosity to the very full.”