During May 1940 German forces swept through Belgium and Northern France, leaving thousands of British and Allied soldiers cut-off against the coast. To avoid disaster, the only option was an evacuation across the English Channel. Between 26 May and 3 June, more than 335,000 troops were rescued from the beaches in one of the most astonishing operations of the war. Working alongside the Royal Navy many privately-owned boats answered the call and made the hazardous voyage across to France to ferry the troops to safety.
This exclusive bronzed sculpture is a small tribute to this operation – the biggest evacuation in military history. The detailed rendering of a civilian rescuing a British soldier from the sea celebrates the role played by the “Little Ships” who answered the call for aid. Adding a majestic backdrop to the sculpture is a gleaming glass panel etched with the words of Winston Churchill’s “We shall fight them on the beaches” speech. Made in the House of Commons on 4th June 1940, the historic speech reflected on what he called the “miracle of deliverance” from Dunkirk.
The inspiring scene stands on a specially-crafted rectangular wooden base. At the front of the plinth is a genuine penny from 1940, protected by a plastic capsule, and an exclusive commemorative medal. In raised relief on the front of the medal is an image of our troops lining up on the beach waiting to be evacuated. On the reverse are the words of Churchill: “…1,000 ships of all kinds carried over 335,000 men, French and British, out of the jaws of shame.”
Sculpture measures 6¾” x 5” x 10½”, including the plinth