Go back
The Battle of Normandy

The Germans cross back over the Seine

The German armies in Normandy had not been annihilated in the Falaise pocket.

The German armies in Normandy had not been annihilated in the Falaise pocket. They were, however, no longer in any fit state to hold off their adversaries. At the end of August, the hour had come for retreat to the Seine, and then on to the borders of the Reich. The Allies tried their best to encircle the enemy to the south of the river, but were not quick enough. Almost all the bridges over the lower Seine had been destroyed. Nonetheless, using ferryboats and whatever other means of transport they could rig up, the Germans managed to get 240,000 men and 30,000 vehicles across upstream and downstream of Rouen, at the price of having to abandon much of their heavy equipment. The operation was carried out in good order despite allied aircraft attacks, which were hampered by cloudy skies.