The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall gathered at a D-Day commemoration service in France as the world remembered the sacrifices and heroism of troops involved in the landings exactly 70 years ago.
David Cameron, Nick Clegg, Ed Miliband and about 400 Commonwealth troops also attended the Royal British Legion service at Bayeux Cathedral in Normandy.
The Last Post was followed by a minute’s silence. During a hymn, Charles and Camilla, Mr Cameron and clergy and dignitaries including Scotland First Minister Alex Salmond moved to the cathedral’s new bell for peace and freedom.
Following a prayer, Charles was asked to name the bell Therese-Benedicte after Therese-Benedicte de la Croix, a German Jewish philosopher.
Born Edith Stein, she was arrested by the Nazis in August 1942 and sent to Auschwitz where she died. In 1999, Pope John Paul II canonised her.
The bell, in the centre of the nave, was commissioned as a symbol of peace and liberty by the diocese of Bayeux as part of the 70th D-Day anniversary commemorations.
After Charles officially named the bell a prayer was said and the bell was rung.
In keeping with French tradition, the bell has a “godmother” – the Queen – and nine junior godfathers and godmothers, children from each of the Allied nations.
Outside the cathedral, Defence Secretary Philip Hammond said: “It’s just humbling to see all these veterans coming up, many in their wheelchairs, walking with absolute determination.
“Even now it’s one of the most complex operations ever undertaken by mankind.”
In a message in the official D-Day brochure, the Queen said: “I am very pleased to be able to join veterans here in Normandy to mark the 70th anniversary of the D-Day landings.
“On June 6 1944 after months of planning and training, the largest amphibious assault in history was launched to secure freedom in Europe.
“Hundreds of thousands of servicemen made the journey across the Channel by sea and air, and through their brave actions and dogged determination, established a vital foothold in occupied Europe.
“This immense and heroic endeavour brought the end of the Second World War within reach.”