A day-to-day account of Operation Market Garden, as it happened in 1944. Written by Joris Nieuwint for Hells Highway tours.
Two troops of the 2nd Household Cavalry, 43rd Wessex Division, XXX corps reaches Driel by using small roads, bypassing the German positions at Oosterhout. The last link has finally been established, although they were still on the south side of the Rhine. In the evening more troops arrived from XXXcorps, 5 DCLI with troops, tanks and DUKWs filled with supplies for the 1st Airborne division fighting in Oosterbeek in the so called “dash for Driel”.
Plans are made immediately to reinforce the besieged troops and deliver the supplies. Unfortunately not much comes of this, the Poles have hardly any boats, the DUKWs get stuck before they reach the Rhine. On top of that, the crossing site is under constant German fire coming from the Westerbouwing Heights. Eventually only 50 poles manage to get across the Rhine and get into the perimeter. The Brits at Oosterbeek would have to do another 24hrs on their own.
Early in the morning near Veghel, disaster strikes when the Germans with the 1/22 SS Panzer Grenadiers supported by Panthers, Tigers and self propelled guns manage to block the corridor at Mariaheide between Veghel and Uden. Their objective is to take both towns but by sheer luck parts of the 506th PIR have been moved to Uden right before the Germans attack. They put up a fierce resistance and the Germans feel Uden is too heavily held and do not press on the attack. Veghel is defended by the 2nd battalion of the 501st PIR which also manages to blunt the German assault and hold the town.
On top of this Veghel is attacked from the south-west by the 59th Volksgrenadier division and is besieged from all sides for a while. The German attacks are beaten back by both the 501st PIR and the combined attacks up the corridor by the 44RTR and 1st battalion of the 327th GIR who move in from Sint Oedenrode.
By Joris Nieuwint / Hells Highway tours.