Go back in time to 1944 with this video that shows you Arnhem Bridge and the surrounding area in a stunning animation. It’s a wonderful opportunity to see what this area looked like pre-war. The devastation that was brought upon this area is heartbreaking, in such a peaceful, natural town. An informative voiceover works in tandem with this animation and is so detailed and shows images of this peaceful town following the destruction of battle.
If you have ever had the opportunity to visit Arnhem, you would have noticed that the area surrounding the bridge has dramatically changed since the War ended. This area sustained heavy damage during the fighting that took place in September 1944 and following that was completely destroyed in October 1944 by Allied bombers. The Arnhem Bridge remains much the same, having been rebuilt following its original design, after the War.
In this animation, you can see the view that John Frost and his team of paratroopers would have had of Arnhem when they first arrived and fought their way into the town to secure the northern ramp on the bridge. You will see all the houses in this video and even get a peek at its many residents.
The grand prize of ‘Operation Market Garden’ was deemed to be the Road Bridge as it was the final one the Allied forces took, being furthest away in the distance. The bridge was taken by the British 1st Airborne Division along with the 1st Independent Polish Parachute Brigade, and they held it together for three days before backup arrived, in the shape of XXXCorps troops.
The 1st Airborne Division suffered heavy losses in reaching this bridge; the Germans prevented most from getting through their lines. Three days and four nights passed before this small band of troops were overwhelmed, and the Germans retook possession of the bridge. The rest of the division fared little better, squeezed into a pocket at Oosterbeek. The Allied troops withdrew on September 25th with a fraction of their men – of 11,000 that landed only 2,000 departed.