NOT many people could have been oblivious to the widespread 75th anniversary commemorations for D-Day.

Veterans attended ceremonies both locally in Dorset and nationwide to mark 75 years since allied troops landed in France during the Second World War.

Today we bring you the story of a plucky little vessel that played a key role in the preparations for June 6, 1944.

It wasn't just troops who contributed to the war effort in the 1940s - My Girl was the pleasure boat that went to battle.

Originally built in Mevagissey in 1931 and purchased by the Hill family, My Girl enjoyed her early years cruising gracefully along the historic shoreline of Plymouth, and up the rivers of Yealm and Tamar.

Everything changed with the outbreak of the Second World War in 1939, when the boat was requisitioned by the army.

With her owner, Skipper Ron Hill and his brother, Bert, My Girl was stationed in Weymouth and Portland.

The men slept on board the boat under sheets of canvas, as in those days she had no cabin. Throughout the war, My Girl ferried soldiers of the Royal Artillery to and from the Breakwater Fort guarding the naval base of Portland Harbour, and on occasion carried the ENSA concert parties out to the forts, where they provided entertainment for the troops.

Despite the high threat of bombing raids and mines, she also transported ammunition for the big guns of the fort, as well as fuel, stores and mail.

In the run-up to D-Day on June 6, 1944, the harbours of Weymouth and Portland provided the springboards for thousands of American troops departing for Omaha Beach in Normandy.

My Girl stepped up, playing a key part in the preparations for the pivotal event and remaining on active duty throughout.

Still sailing today, My Girl is proud to fly the pennant of The Royal Artillery Association, and is a member of The Historic Ships of Great Britain.

She has reclaimed her primary role as a pleasure boat, operating as a ferry service for passengers between Weymouth Harbour and Portland.

My Girl also calls at the D-Day Centre at Castletown, which provides an interactive experience for visitors and honours the American soldiers who left these harbours to take part in the liberation of Europe.

This information, and accompanying photographs, has been shared by Marian Lye, the daughter of none other than Ron Hill himself.

Marian contributed towards the second edition of Ron's book Weymouth at War, writing chapters entitled Growing Up with My Girl and The Landmark Walks.

The latter describes three walks to enjoy around the local shorelines, and highlights the wartime events that occurred there.

My Girl participated in the 75th D-Day commemorations that recently took place, sailing from Weymouth to Castletown in what retraced the journey this little ship often made during some of the toughest times of history.

It is a testament to her builders and owners that she survived the war and remains in such pristine condition today.