Guernsey / Museum
Castle Cornet was a hugely strategic location for the occupying forces to control St Peter Port Harbour and so they reinforced it. Allied Liberating Task Force 135, landed at the Castle breakwater on 9 May and was occupied again by the British. Liberation Day is celebrated each year on the 9 May, and is a public holiday.
In June 1940, German forces landed in the Islands of Guernsey, occupying them for a period of almost five years until the end of WWII.
800-year-old Castle Cornet guards the mouth of St Peter Port Harbour and looks out across to the smaller inhabited Islands of Herm and Sark.
Now a museum, the Castle was a hugely strategic location for control of St. Peter Port Harbour and so the occupiers set about reinforcing and defending it with machine guns, anti-flak guns and roll bombs. Remains of a German mortar position, bunker and concrete reinforcements are a permanent reminder of this period of the Castle’s history, then referred to as ‘Stutzpunkt Hafenschloss’ or harbour lock.
At 08.30 hrs on the 9 May, 1945, the first Allied Landing Craft Assault (LCA), operating under liberating Task Force 135, docked at the Castle Breakwater with the task of securing the Castle and, in doing so, took command of the Harbour and its approaches.
Liberation Day on 9 May is a public holiday in Guernsey. Guernsey’s capital town of St Peter Port comes alive with thousands of people watching parades, military vehicle cavalcades, military aircraft displays, live music and activities. Fireworks are set off from Castle Cornet, as the culmination of this day of remembrance and the celebration of freedom from oppression.