Arnhem Part 1 – Battle for the Bridges
The Market Garden Collection, in four full length DVDs, aims to cover the whole of this most controversial Allied campaign of the Second World War, from the break out of XXX Corps from Joe’s Bridge to Arnhem. Separate DVDs will cover the fighting by the 101st US Airborne and British Guards Armoured Divisions on Hell’s Highway and the Guards this time alongside the 82nd US Airborne Division at the bridges in Nijmegen. The battle by the 1t British Airborne Division fought at Arnhem will be the subject of two disks.
With the help of experts on the battle we will be systematically stripping away layers of myth, misunderstanding and occasionally obscuration to reveal the startling facts behind decisions and events that led to some of the most courageous and tenacious fighting by soldiers of both sides.
The Battle of Arnhem fought in the early autumn of 1944, remains without a doubt the most hotly debated battle of the North West European Campaign, both then and now. From its inception in the sixteen cancelled airborne operations during August we will chart the problems, many of which were ignored by men desperate to get into battle, the compromises and mistakes that pitched lightly armed and equipped paratroopers and glider infantry into an unequal struggle against an SS panzer troops.
We follow the eight mile route that 2 Para took to reach the bridge at Arnhem, slipping through the German defences. Meanwhile, the remainder of the force tangled with 9th SS Hohenstaufen Panzer Division whose presence in the woods north of Arnhem had been dismissed as a figment of an intelligence officers’ imagination. The film reaches a finale as 2 Para isolated from the rest of the Division and with the US Airborne and XXX Corps stalled at the Nijmegen Bridge, fights a bitter battle for survival that ultimately ended with the message ‘Out of ammunition. God save the King.’
The Market Garden Collection will continue in Arnhem Part 2 –Battle of the Oosterbeek Perimeter
John Greenacre – author, battlefield guide and recently retired Army Air Corps pilot, John has completed a Phd on British Airborne Forces. His presence on the team has helped greatly to the research and presentation of a number of technical areas such as the persistent issue of radio communication which is hotly debated by many who have tried through numerous way to prove their case.
Jo Hook – Jo a former Territorial signaller who served in Bosnia with IFOR, is passionate about the battle of Arnhem, having spent many years researching and walking the battlefields she is one of the most knowledgeable experts and battlefield guides available to those wishing to follow and understand the Battle. She brings her insight to the programme in no small measure and has a breadth of vision that few can rival that places Arnhem and the events of the battle in context.
Bob Hilton – After 22 Years service in 2 Para including in the Falklands, Bob Hilton has an intimate knowledge of paratroopers and airborne operation both through his personal experience and through the medium of oral history with veterans of Arnhem. He is now a researcher at the Airborne Assault Museum at Duxford and was able to produce numerous gems that throws a fresh light on the battle and resolved conclusively a number of debates and myths.
Tim Saunders – Half of Tim’s fourteen books have been on aspects of the Normandy Campaign, this coupled with his knowledge of the ground as a battlefield guide, makes him an acknowledged expert in the subject of the Hitlerjugend Division. As a former army officer he is adept at taking an objective stance when dealing with the controversial subjects such as the allegations of atrocities by both sides during the battles fought around the Norman city of Caen. He will take us to where great events were played out.
Richard Hone – A former Warrant Office of the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers, Richard lives and breaths armoured vehicle and equipment. His insight and knowledge of the workings of the German Army in Normandy, as seen in the best selling DVD ‘Wittmann v Ekins – Death of a Panzer Ace’ brings the subject to life and makes this programme a refreshing new look at the soldiers who fought in the very heart of the Normandy Campaign against both British and Canadian troops
Andrew Duff – Another former army officer, Andrew maintains the Division’s story firmly within the campaign as a whole, with his succinct yet insightful contextual briefings and comment on the Allied view of events. The level of his scholarship, while being readily accessible, will ensure that this production will have a wide appeal.
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