#AceBritishHistoryNews – July 05 – Operation Perch was a British offensive of the Second World War between 7 and 14 June 1944. The intention was to seize Caen, a major Allied objective in the early stages of the invasion of north-west Europe.
The operation had been planned to start immediately after the beach landings, but when Caen was still in German hands three days into the Battle of Normandy, it changed to a pincer attack using XXX Corps and I Corps.
I Corps’s eastern thrust from the Orne bridgehead met determined resistance.
With mounting casualties and no sign of success, the offensive was abandoned.
To the west, American pressure had opened up a gap in the German lines.
The 7th Armoured Division was ordered to advance through it, to try to force a German retreat.
After two days of intense fighting, the division’s position was untenable and it was withdrawn.
Historians generally agree that while an early opportunity to capture Caen was squandered by British command failures, the Germans had had to use their most powerful armoured reserves in a defensive role, incurring heavy losses, rather than in counter-offensive operations.