BBC Northern Ireland – We Fought On D-Day

'We Fought On D-Day' was a documentary produced by BBC Northern Ireland and Doubelband Films telling the stories of 1st Battalion Royal Ulster Rifles.

“We weren’t told anything. We weren’t told anything at all. We were brought out into the airfield, the gliders were lined up and each company was given a glider.”

“This was the day that we’d been training for and naturally enough, people were a bit tense, you know what I mean. First time going into action in the glider, knowing that you’re going to get hit with flak and not knowing if there was going to be planes come at you or whatever. So it was scary at the time, you know.”

“Inside each glider, a platoon of up to thirty men prepared for the hazardous journey into enemy territory.”

“Your gliders take to the air and you and I are in a glider. We’ve no ‘chutes. We’re in a plywood coffin. That’s what the boys used to call it.”

“The portholes in it are cellophane. You could stick your finger through them and if you sat down hard on the seat, you would have went through it.”

“They were like paper. You could near blow through them. You were always worried. They way they were built, you know, they could have fell into two halves.”

“I would say it’s a death trap.”

“The men were quiet. You would get the odd one making a wee jump. And what was going through my officer’s mind? You know, he was probably saying “what am I going to do when I get ashore here? How are these boys going to perform?” All those sort of things.”

“Truthfully, like, I joined up knowing there’s a war on for a start. I knew at some time or another I was going to have to go into action. So, I’ll be honest, it didn’t really annoy me nothing, not really, you know. I accepted it actually, it was a bit of excitement more than anything, you know.”

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