On 6 June 1944, over 130,000 Allied troops landed on the beaches of Normandy as part of an operation to free Western Europe from German occupation. Divisions from land, sea and air descended on the shores to partake in what was to become the largest seaborne invasion in history. Ships took to the seas to make up the biggest armada the world has ever seen, with 5,000 vessels in the waters around Normandy that day.


BIGOT was a World War II security classification at the highest level of security – above Top Secret. It stood for the British Invasion of German Occupied Territory and was chosen by British Prime Minister Winston Churchill.

Everyone with knowledge of the D-Day planning work, including the beaches involved in D-Day and the date of invasion, were security cleared and listed on what was known as the ‘BIGOT list’. Those on the BIGOT list were banned from travelling outside the UK in case they were captured and coerced into talking. The stamp ‘BIGOT’ was used to mark all Overlord papers and files.


Expertly reproduced from originals held in the National Archives, these important documents tell the story of D-Day, Operation Overlord from beginning to end, and its significance in changing the course of The Second World War.

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