THE cost of war was brought home with a commemorative event marking 80 years since the Normandy landings.

The 80th anniversary of D-Day was marked in Hexham with a joint event organised by Hexham Town Council and Hexham Community Partnership, the town's development trust.

Various bands performed during the event, before a beacon was lit and a closing singalong took place after 9pm.

Volunteers helped set up the event Volunteers helped set up the event (Image: Hexham Town Council/Hexham Community Partnership)

Hexham mayor Derek Kennedy said: “Hexham commemorated the 80th year since D-Day. The Hexham Village Band played a ceilidh and local people joined with a dance. This was followed by the Tyne Valley Big Band playing a 1940s swing set with Glen Miller’s music as the main focus.

READ MORE: Reflecting on D-Day as milestone anniversary celebrated

Hexham Abbey at dusk on D-DayHexham Abbey at dusk on D-Day (Image: Hexham Town Council/Hexham Community Partnership)

"Town crier Helen Wearmouth and I made the various announcements. I was honoured to light the beacon on the roof of Hexham’s Moot Hall as part of a national coordinated lighting to end the daylight of D-Day.

Ceilidh dancing in Hexham Ceilidh dancing in Hexham (Image: Hexham Town Council/Hexham Community Partnership)

"While in Noyon, Hexham’s twin town, I visited the British and Commonwealth war cemetery and it was enormously moving to see the precision of the graves and the different regiments and the number of persons buried without a name."

The Hexham Village Band performed a ceilidhThe Hexham Village Band performed a ceilidh (Image: Natalie Finnigan)

Councillor for Hexham East, Suzanne Fairless-Aitken, who is also chair of Community Engagement, said: "It was really moving to see people turn out to mark the anniversary of the Normandy landings, where freedom was gained through the sacrifices of so many lives.

The Hextol Tans served scones and hot drinksThe Hextol Tans served scones and hot drinks (Image: Natalie Finnigan)

"I was listening to the radio all day hearing tales of scared teenagers arriving on a beach, with no clue where they were and afraid to show their fear.

"Those who returned were equally damaged by the experience but also should be so proud, along with us and their families, of the bravery they showed in the face of fascist oppression and genocide.

Ceilidh dancing in the marketplaceCeilidh dancing in the marketplace (Image: Natalie Finnigan)

"We lit a beacon alongside the national ones at 9.15pm after a moving proclamation by Helen Wearmouth, our town crier.

"We ended with a wartime swing medley of Glen Miller, Vera Lynn and others which brought the cost of war home. Thank you Hexham for coming and to our amazing volunteers who were out all afternoon getting things ready."