Page last updated at 13:40 GMT, Saturday, 9 May 2009 14:40 UK

Calls for Liberation bank holiday

About 2000 islanders turned out to watch the annual Church Parade

Guernsey's Culture Minister is calling for 9 May to be made an official bank holiday as islanders line the streets to celebrate Liberation Day.

The 64th anniversary of the liberation of Guernsey from Nazi occupation has fallen on a Saturday this year.

But only some islanders who do not normally work on a Saturday have been given a day off in lieu by employers.

Deputy Mike O'Hara said he has already taken steps to ensure the day is made an official holiday by next year.

This follows an announcement by the States in February that Public Service workers would be given an extra day off in the week, to make up for the weekend celebration.

Mike O'Hara said he wants Liberation Day to be a day off for everyone

About 2,000 islanders turned out for the traditional parade to the annual Service of Thanksgiving.

Members of the current armed forces, youth groups and visiting Chelsea Pensioners were joined in the march by members of the original liberating forces 64 years ago.

The Channel Islands were the only part of the British Isles to be occupied during World War II.

Celebrations will continue throughout the day with entertainment on the seafront, including live music and food markets.

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