VVAM Newsletter 15 – 1984

Editor: Drs R.P.G.A. Voskuil
Translation: A.G. Meeuwsen

Dear Friends,
Although many articles have already teen published concerning the Battle of Arnhem, the fact rentains that about certain events there still exist diverse conflicting versions, while hardly any attention has been paid to certain other events and happe¬nings. We also still need more detailed information about yet other situations. It sometimes happens that we have to review our visions on certain events because of new information received. By way of our mini-stories, together with the reactions on these stories from our members, we try to obtain and record the most accurate information, to throw more light on unknown or obscure situations, and to complete our documentation. The Museum possesses a valuable collection. It is, however, not yet a complete col¬lection. Many helpful attributes are still wanting and it is still not always possible to display the articles we do possess in the most effective way. We try to support the Museum in this aspect. For instance, we hope shortly to present the Museum with a new show-case in which special attention will be paid to the Airlanding Brigade.
All these activities are meant to record the events of September 1944 in word and image. We want to enlarge the knowledge and insight about these events, by way of stimulating the visits to the Museum during various special events, by issuing route¬descriptions and by trying to reach as many schools as possible in order to interest the youth in what we are doing.
The Battle of Arnhem was part of the battle fought to liberate our country and our people from Kazi-dictatorship, from a totalitarian regime. Many young men from friendly nations gave their lives, together with many civilians. Others survived, but were wounded or maimed, both in body and in mind. History is not a matter of the past. We still have the duty to keep it alive. The Airborne Cemetery, the Airborne Museum and the yearly Commemoration of the Battle of Arnhem all remind us of the obligation not to squander the freedom and peace which was so dramatically obtained, but to honour it with caution, determination and gratitude.
J. Smits, Chairman.

Publications of walking-,cycling- and driving guide-booklets.
Our Association has published three guides for the area of the Battle of Arnhem. The walking booklet covers part of the “perimeter”, the horse-shoe shaped area in the Western part of Oosterbeek which the British occupied between September 19th and 25th. The cycling- and drivings guides both contain a route through Oosterbeek, Arnhem, Driel, Heelsum and Wolfheze.
Apart from the military history the booklets also contain information about nature and landscape of the region. They were edited by Mr. C.Schimmel and Mr.C.van Roekel. The signposting was attended to by Mr. Risseeuw and Mr. Wichart. The costs are f 0,30 for the walking guide and f 1,— for the cycling- and driving guides. The walking guide has been translated into English, translation of the driving guide will follow.

Large gift for our Association.
One of our members who wants to remain anonymous, has donated a gift of f 500,— for our work. We do appreciate this gesture very much indeed.

Programme of the 40th Commemoration of the Battle of Arnhem
Wednesday ,September 19th: 20.00 hrs. Arrival of British and Polish pilgrims at
Town Hall in Oosterbeek. oration
Thursday, September 20th: 14.00 hrs. Official opening ceremony of the commem
weekend at the Eusebius Church in Arnhem. ,
Friday, September 21th : 18.00 hrs. Annual general meeting of Arnhem Veterans
at “de Rijnkom” in Renkum. 18.00hrs. Open air Holy Mass for Polish pilgrims in r , at 19.00 hrs followed by reunion Polish Veterans at “Cafe Bulte’ in Driel.
20.00 hrs. Reunion Arnhem Veterans Club (members only) at the “Rijnkom in en um. Saturday,September 22nd: 08.30 hrs. Assemble at the Arnhem Town Hall for procession
to the Arnhem Airborne-monument near the Arnhem (“John Frost”) Bridge. Placing o wrea s.
10.00 hrs. Reception at the Provincial Government House, Arnhem. The Veterans wi present a gift.
12.00 hrs. Dropping of parachutists of the 10th Battalion of the Parachute Regiment on the former droppingzones at the Ginkel Heath near Ede. After the dropping there will be a short commemoration-service at the monument at the Ginkel Heath.
15.00 hrs. Open air Holy Mass, followed by placing of wreaths at the Polish monument in Driel.
18.30 hrs. Holy Mass at the Roman-Catholic Church in Oosterbeek (Utrechtseweg 129).
In September 1944 Mr. E. Collinge, in his distress, took with him a crucifix from this church. During this service he will personally return it. The crucifix will be given a special place in the church.
20.00 hrs. The traditional tattoo on the square in front of the Oosterbeek Town Hall.
21.00 hrs. Social Evening for pilgrims, Arnhem veterans and their Dutch friends in the “Rijnhal” at Arnhem.
Sunday, September 23rd: 09.00 hrs. Divine Service at the Dutch Reformed Church
(Airborne Church) in Oosterbeek, led by Rev. L.E. Phillips and Ds. Ponsteen.
11.00 hrs. Commemoration Service at the Airborne Cemetery Oosterbeek, organised by the Airborne Forces Security Fund.
14.00 hrs. Boattrip on the river Rhine for pilgrims and guests.
20.00 hrs. Open air concert with Vera Lynn at the Airborne Museum, Oosterbeek,
Monday, September 24th: Departure of British and Polish guests.

Special Postmark.
On the occasion of the 4oth commemoration of the Battle of Arnhem, we have had a special postmark made by the Postal Service. All mail passing the district post office at Arnhem between August 25th and September 27th, will be provided with this postmark.
All members of our Association will receive free a special commemorative envelope with this special postmark. A limited number of these envelopes will be for sale for other interested persons. Costs: f5,—.

“Airborne Memorial Award” for radio-transmitting amateurs.
In Sept. 1979 some licenced radio-transmitting amateurs living in the municipality of Renkum, instituted a special “Airborne Memorial Award” certificate. This certificate can be obtained for a small sum by amateurs outside the municipality after they have made a certain number of contacts with members of the group.
The “Award” shows a map of the municipality on which can be found the landingzones, the Hartenstein Hotel, the Old Church and the Airborne Cemetery. The map is surrounded by photographs concerning the various situations. The.proceeds go to the Airborne Forces Security Fund. Secretary of the group is Mr. P. Poot, Benedendorpsweg 79, Oosterbeek.

Holt’s “Battlefield Guide Market-Garden”.
Mr. and Mrs. Holt, who already did compile illustrated guides for the Ypres battlefields in W-Flanders (1st World War) and Normandy, now have also compiled an illustrated guide concerning the Market Garden battlefields. This new guide contains three routes which can be followed by car.
The first route covers the entire former battlefields near Arnhem. The central theme in the second guide has been dedicated to the battle in the Betuwe area (Driel,Heteren) and near and in Nijmegen and Groesbeek. The third route has been dedicated to the actions in the areas of Grave and Eindhoven and of the road between Eindhoven and the Maas-Schelde Canal. The guide gives a short and clear description of all special and important points along the routes. Furthermore it contains a short historic survey of the events of September stay in the Market Garden Areas as lnformation which can te of use during one’s published by the firm of Leo Cooper and costs £ 2.95.

Brian Urquhart at the Airborne Museum (Photo: B. de Reus)

Brian Urquhart visits the Airborne Museum.
On Sunday, June 21+th, Mr. Brian E. Urquhart visited the Airborne Museum. In 19^ the then 25-year-old Brian Urquhart was Chief Intelligence Officer at the First Allied Airborne Corps Headquarters. He warned that the German resistance in the Arnhem area was much stronger than was thought. But in spite of the fact that air-reconnaissance confirmed his suspicions, his advice was disregarded.
After the war Urquhart joined the United Nations. Since 197^ he is Under Secretary- General for special political affairs.

“Special Subject-day” a great succes.
Blessed by the very nice weather, our special subject-day was a great succes. About 100 members took part and the work of the organizers was very much appreciated. As various members could not take part (it was the holiday-season, after all), we have been asked to repeat this event in the autumn. Provided that at least 25 members will take part, this day will be repeated on October 13th, 198lt. The programme will be unaltered, the costs will also be the same. See Newsletter no.lh.

New Museum-ties.
The Airborne Museum has new ties for sale. These ties, with the Pegasus emblems and the coat of arms of the municipality of Remkum, can be obtained in the colours brown, blue and green. They cost f 19,50.

Bronze commemoration medal.
On the occasion of the l*0th commemoration a limited number of numbered bronze commemoration medals has been cast in England. A small amount of these medals is now for sale at the Museum. They cost f 39,-.

One of the many initiatives that have been developed in connection with the 40th commemoration of the Battle of Arnhem, is the introduction of bottles of “Airborne-wine” with a special commemoration label. The Ede wine buyers Rijsemus and De Frei introduce this Rhone-wine. The label shows symbols of the various participating units, in origi¬nal colours.
Part of the proceeds will be donated to the Association of Friends of the Airborne Museum.

Reprint of “Die dag in September” (“That Day in September).
That day in September, Sunday,September 17th,19^, to be precise, teacher Hendrika van der Vlist suddenly found herself in the middle of acts of war. Her parental home, the “Schoonoord Hotel” in Oosterbeek, first was the scene of heavy fighting and afterwards became a field-hospital in which hundreds of British and German wounded soldiers were nursed. Hendrika stayed there till the end of the battle and assisted untiringly with the nursing, together with other dedicated civilian helpers.
During these turbulent days she made short notices in the diary. Afterwards, during the evacuation period in the’last months of the war, she turned these notes into a story. In 1975 the manuscript was printed and the book published. Now, in 198b, a reprint has appeared. This moving story still possesses its original authenticity as nothing was added to it or changed after the war.
The book is published by the Gooise Uitgeverij in Weesp. It costs f 19,50.

New book: “Echoes from Arnhem”.
One of the most important reasons for the failure of the Battle of Arnhem seem to have been the faulty radio-communications. At least, that is what people say. However, the author of the newly issued book “Echoes from Arnhem”, Lewis Golden, considers this standpoint heavily exagerated.
Lewis Golden, who was an adjutant with the 1st Airborne Signals in 19HU, in the first part of his book describes the structure and organisation of the Airborne Communication troops, from the moment that they were founded in 19^2. Much attention is paid to the role they played during the operations in North-Africa, Sicily and Italy. Many of the faults of the system were then already diagnosed, but this did hot always result in the introduction of improvements. The signals troops suffered from the extra handicap that their apparatus, like themselves, had to be dropped from the air, with the result that more often than not their apparatus was spread all over the field. There was also the risk of it being damaged or lost. Golden analyses how these problems did influence the progress of the battle. Several radiocommunications failed and he tries to trace the reason why this happenend. Yet he comes to the conclusion that these communications turned out to be more effective than has mostly believed. In his observations about Arnhem, Golden does not confine himself to the role of the signals troops, he also gives a critical analysis of the entire operation and its previous history.
“Echoes from Arnhem” is published by William Kimber in London and costs £ 10.50.

The three 17-pounder guns near the Museum.
The history of the three 17-pounder guns which have been placed around the museum will be the subjects of a future ministory. Information, about these guns will be gladly received by Mr. C. van Roekel, care of the Museum.

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