The 'Whale' roadway section and buffer pontoon of the Second World War Mulberry Harbour is protected under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 as amended for its special architectural or historic interest. However it is presently rusting away partly submerged next to the derelict Royal Pier and there is a possibility it will disappear altogether over the next winter. According to Historic England it is a 'tangible reminder of the part played by the Mulberry Harbour in the success of Operation Overlord' and a 'reminder of the prominent role of the City of Southampton in the preparation and launching of Overlord'. However because of the secrecy surrounding D-Day the role of Southampton as the 'springboard' for Operation Overlord is not generally recognised and this ePetition will help to put the historical record straight. Another aim of this project is to regenerate the waterfront after the master plan was scrapped by providing a tourist amenity and new visitor centre with a tourist bus route around the port to include the sites where Patton's Third Army embarked for Normandy and Winston Churchill inspected British assault troops before D-Day. The route could be extended to the SeaCity Museum because it is partly located in the Civic Centre where the US Army headquarters was situated during D-Day). Although Operation Overlord was the greatest period in Southampton's history currently there is no significant memorial to celebrate this achievement.
This ePetition ran from 28/09/2020 to 01/03/2021 and has now finished.
275 people signed this ePetition.
The Council would like to thank you for taking the time to petition it in respect of this matter. Whilst the Council appreciates the value of the history surrounding Mulberry Bridge and Operation Overlord, it is not in a position to purchase the protected structure owned by a third party. There is a short reference to Operation Overlord in the D-Day display in the Southampton Stories exhibition at SeaCity Museum. However, the petitioner might wish to consider working with the organisers of Heritage Open days to bring this important part of Southampton’s history to the forefront.