Five- six day tour to the Operation market Garden Area for Engineers


Day 1 Travel Out

Illustration 1: Troops of 7thn Armoured Divisdion liberate Wetteren Belgium

Depart UK

Stand 1 Wetteren (Belgium) en 4th Field Squadron RE were involved in the capture of Wetteren Bridge which, in the absence of infantry was defended for two days in September against German attacks. It is an opportunity to break the journey at a location where sappers demonstrated that they were soldiers first in a troop level action.

Arrive Eindhoven area – overnight Eindhoven,

Day 2 Operation Garden.

downloadFollow the path of the 30 Corps as they sought to link up with the airborne troops landed on the bridges from Eindhoven to Arnhem. It is an opportunity to explore the role played by the engineers in this dramatic battle which focused on bridges and the tenuous route up which 30 Corps advanced.

Joe’s Bridge We will start at De Groote Barrier bridge (Joe’s Bridge) over the Meuse Escuat Canal – captured intact by the Irish Guards and the part played by 615 Field Squadron RE. This bridge would carry the whole of 30th Corps and all of the engineering stores needed to bridge any demolished briodges and repair the route to Arnhem. This might be a good place to consider the logistics of engineering.

Stand 3 Son

The Bailey bridge at Son

We follow the path of 14 Field Squadron RE with the Guards Armoured Division in the advance to Nijmegen. The bridge at Son was demolished by the Germans just before the US Paratroops from 10st Airborne Division could capture it. A replacement was built by the Royal Engineers of Guards Armoured Division on 18/19th September. It was subject to repeated counter attacks by the Germans,

Stand 4 Nijmegen

US Military map of Nijmegen area

The Road and Rail bridges over the Waal at Nijmegen were prepared by the Germans for demolition. However the Germans did not demolish the bridges because they wanted to use them to transport their own armour to a counter attack the airborne corridor. When a troop of tanks of the Grenadier Guards ruched the bridge the Germans failed to demolish it. We can also find a location to discuss route improvement.

Overnight Nijmegen

Day 3 Op Market.

British Royal Engineers 1st Para Squadron Cpl John Humphreys Cpl Charles Weir Lt Dennis Simpson Cpt Eric Mackay at Nijmegen Holland recreating their escape

We spend a day Arnhem, visiting the actions in the area including a visit to the Osterbeek museum

Stand 5 is the landing grounds near Wolfheze

Stand 6 Actions of 1 Para Engineer Squadron at the Arnhem bridge.

Stand 7 explores the actions of 4th Para Squadron who operated as infantry in the defence of the Osterbeek perimeter.

Stand 8 covers the river crossing launched by 43 Division to recover the survivors of 1st Airbiorne Division.

Overnight Nijmegen

Day 4 Overloon – Mine clearance

Flail tanks and Royal Engineers Overloon October 1944

The battle of Overloon took place East of Eindhoven in early October 1944, after the end of Market Garden. Including this battle is an opportunity to look at mine clearance and the role of armoured engineers.

The Germans had laid extensive minefields on the their western border. There is a museum on the preserved battlefield of Overloon. This has a very extensive collection of military vehicles ,including Allied and german tanks knocked out during the battlefield. Some of these show the evidence of the effects of anti tank mines on tanks and armoured cars and British fatalities are buried in a Commonwealth War Cemetery a close by.

After the museum visit we explore a series of stands looking at the challenges facing the 3rd Infantry Division in the woods and stream bisected fields between Overloon and Venrij and the way the tactical and engineering problems were tackled by engineers and armoured engineers.

Overnight Eindhoven

Day 5

Ex Washup and Recovery


Day 5 – Rhine crossing

If wished we could extend the tour by a day to include Op Plunder the Rhine Crossing. This was a major opposed river crossing and is a chance to look at amphibious operations.

XIII Corps 1 July 1916

18 Infantry Division Artillery 1 July Reduced
This map was issued with the 18th Division artillery orders dated 19th June 1916. 

18 Infantry Division Artillery 1 JulyThe above map is shows the divisional and group boundaries and lifts.  It is very similar to the map issued by RA 29th Division except the individual battery targets are not marked.

The innovative procedure is the barrage map, which is unlike any other maps for 1st July 1916. It is a technical drawing from which individual gun data can be calculated.

18 Inf div barrage map reduced
This barrage map is unlike any other maps for 1st July 1916. It is a technical drawing from which individual gun data can be calculated.

From 1916 to 1945 the creeping barrage was an important artillery technique favoured by the british Army.

sangro barrage map

Artillery map for XIII Corps Heavy Artillery.

XIII_Corps_HA_1 July

Cold War Material


Strategic Setting

Operational setting



I BR Corps Deployment

Approximate 1 BR Corps deplopyment 1988

NorthAG Counterstroke

Counter stroke trace


BAOR Road Map

BAOR Road Map Reduced
Extract from BAOR Road map 1:500,000 GSGS 5070 series 9 – 1980s roadmap

3 MB file here

I BR Corps Road Map Extracts

Hildesheim -Braunschwieg – the Pin Table
1 BR Corps map extract_Northern Extension_reduced
1 BR Corps 1:100,000 Map the Pin Table Area NC 6077 – PD0005

3 MB image here

Area of 1 BR Corps 1:100,000 map extract NC/PC Eastings 62-02 Northings 49-77
Area of 1 BR Corps 1:100,000 map extract NC/PC Eastings 62-02 Northings 49-77

3 MB image here

Weser Valley Minden-Hameln
1 BR Corps map extract_R Weser_reduced
1 Br Corps 1:100,000 map extract Weser Valley 9568-3695

3 MB image here

Abberode -Lochtum Inner German Border

BAOR Road map 1:100,000 IGB area PD0755- 6212

4Mb image here

Briefing material

NATO’S Northern Army Group


Download here

Threat Material


This poster sized publication folded down to a pocket sized  aide memoir covering Warsaw Pact equipment , organisations and tactics.

Threat Aide Memoir side 1_Reduced

High resolution version here

Threat Aide Memoir side 2 reduced

High resolution version here