Top secret heroes remembered at last
- Thu 12th Jul 2012
The men of COPP (Combined Operations Pilotage Parties) had a memorial installed on the seafront, Hayling Island today, in memory of their heroic contribution to the allied war effort.
The top secret COPP Depot was set up in 1943 on Hayling Island under the instruction of Lord Louis Mountbatten. Small teams of sailors and soldiers trained as frogmen and canoeists for covert beach reconnaissance and other essential secret operations prior to the Allied landings on enemy occupied territory throughout the world.
It is recognised that their brave work safe guarded the lives of countless allied servicemen.
Six soldiers from the 24th Regiment Royal Engineers Commandos drove cross country from Cornwall, to deliver the granite pillar, weighing almost 12 tonnes, from the Dutchy of Cornwall quarry in Liskeard. The stone was donated to the cause by Ian Piper a stonemason. Ian’s team shaped the memorial and sculptured the combined operations badge.
Robin Walton, the organiser of this prestigious heroes memorial said; “ The idea of using the Cornish granite came from the fund’s patron, HRH the Prince of Wales.
“As Lord Louis Mountbatten ordered the formation of COPP it is fitting that his daughter, Countess Patricia Mountbatten, should officially unveil the memorial for us later this year.
“This was a very proud moment for me and the people who have helped make this possible. Without donations of funding and a lot of hard work this might not have happened at all.”
Councillor Leah Turner, of Havant Borough Council said;” I am delighted to have been able to assist Robin Walton in this wonderful project, and am so pleased to see the memorial take pride of place on the Hayling Island seafront. Remembering these brave men who served our country so well.”
The official dedication and unveiling of the World War II memorial, by Countess Mountbatten, will take place on 27th September 2012 at 11:30am at the memorial location, opposite Sea Grove Avenue, Hayling Island Sea Front.
By forum user, Bruce_Bennett
Discuss this news item in our forum