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The Making of Bloody Omaha 1: Starting out

Updated Thursday 7th June 2007

News that an English military enthusiast had dug up a forgotten German gun battery near the landing beach prompts Timewatch to revisit Omaha.

Researcher Georgina Leslie shares her diary about the making of the Timewatch episode which explored the history of the Normandy Landings: Bloody Omaha.

Thursday 7 June

James Hayes [Producer/Director] and I meet John Farren [Timewatch Commissioning Editor] to talk through the programme. The idea to make a Timewatch on Omaha was prompted by news that an English military enthusiast by the name of Gary Sterne had dug up a forgotten German gun battery near the landing beach. It caused quite a splash in the press – and Gary’s theory is that this Maisy battery could have contributed to the high casualty rate on D-Day.

John wants us to investigate this, taking a historian out to visit the site to see what he makes of it. Meanwhile it gives us the opportunity to revisit the incredible story of Omaha, the training for mission impossible and what happened on the day itself through the stories of people who were actually part of it.

James and I go away to do some background reading – it’s a big subject to cover and there’s a lot to get our heads round. Best of all, I get to re-watch the epic opening scenes in Saving Private Ryan and call it work.

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