Double Hills Memorial

Double Hills Memorial

On Sunday afternoon 3pm 16th September the Annual Double Hills Memorial Service took place at the Memorial Cross and Commonwealth War Graves Section in Milton Cemetery Weston-super-Mare

“Double Hills” is the Annual Memorial to remember the 23 brave lives lost when Glider RJ113, en-route to Arnhem, crashed into a meadow called Double Hills in the village of Paulton in Somerset (Near Bath). They all died on a beautiful Sunday Morning 17th Sept. 1944.

The men who died were the first casualties of the Battle for the Arnhem Bridge of “Bridge Too Far” fame, codenamed “Operation Market Garden”. The plan was to land an Allied Airborne Army behind German lines and end the war in 1944, and bring the boys home.

With their towing Bomber, a Short-Stirling, they had taken off from RAF Keevil airfield, Trowbridge, Wilts on-board were 21 Airborne Sappers (Royal Engineers) from the 9th Field Company Airborne Royal Engineers and 2 Pilots from the Glider Pilot Regiment all died in the Double Hills meadow when the tail of their Glider exploded and broke up in the skies over Paulton and crashed to earth.

All the soldiers who died, were buried with full honours in the Milton Cemetery Weston Super Mare, their graves were installed and are maintained by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.

The Service was organised by Weston-super-Mare Branch of the Royal British Legion. County and Branch Standards and Officials of the Royal British Legion, the Royal Engineers Association, Representatives of the Armed Forces and Cadet Forces attended the Service.

Cadets from Worle Detachment Army Cadet Force and 290 Weston-super-Mare and District Squadron, Air Cadets, placed poppy crosses on each grave. Wreaths were laid by Lt. Colonel Barry Angus (Army Air Corps); Dave Yeo (Chairman, Bristol Branch Royal Engineers Association); Dennis Cruze (Chairman, Somerset County Community Support Committee (CCSC)) and Robin Potter (Weston Branch RBL) among others. Last Post and Reveille was excellently played, courtesy of Weston Brass, providing a poignant and fitting tribute to the bravery of those who fell in this mission.

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