Calais - Fight to the Finish - May 1940
This is the story of the Battle of Calais, a short but bloody struggle to delay the German advance in May 1940. It is a story of uncertainty, of taut nerves, of heat, dust, raging thirst and hand-to-hand fighting in the narrow streets of the channel port now known to millions of Britons as a gateway to the Continent. The guide will take the visitor beyond the ferry terminal and hypermarkets to reveal the hidden Calais and the actions of individuals and units.
In early 1942, shipping losses in the Atlantic threatened Britain's very survival. In addition to the U-Boat menace, there was real concern that the mighty German battleship Tirpitz be unleashed against the vital Allied convoys. Yet only the 'Normandie' Dock at St Nazaire could take her vast size in the event of repairs being required. Destroy that and the Tirpitz would be neutralised. Thus was born Operation CHARIOT, the daring Commando raid that, while ultimately successful, proved hugely costly. Using personal accounts, James Dorrian describes the background and thrilling action that resulted in the award of five Victoria Crosses. In a dramatic final twist of events, once the battle was over, the converted former US warship Campelton blew up wrecking the dock gates and killing many Germans who thought the battle was won.
Dunkirk: From Disaster to Deliverance - Channel Ports
The miracle of Dunkirk. The defeat that was a triumph. Overwhelmed by the German blitzkreig the British Expeditionary Force somehow extricated itself, less gigantic quantities of equipment and over 300,000 troops, to our island fortress to fight another day. That much is well known. But, as the author fascinatingly reveals, many myths surround the momentous days and hours when Britain's future hung in the balance. There was much more to the Dunkirk story than evacuating the beaches in the little ships and boats. The book also describes the heroic delaying actions at strongpoints such as Cassel, the tragic massacre of Wormhoult/Eschelbeck, the perimeter battles, the role of the RAF and the importance of the Dunkirk Mole, from whence the majority embarked. Patrick Wilson describes the overall strategy that was hastily adopted as well as graphically detailing individual actions. In true Battleground Europe style, this splendid little book is both an essential companion to the visitor to these thoroughly accessible battlefields as well as a rattling good read in the comfort of your home.
Boulogne - 20 Guards Bridage's Fighting Defence - May 1940
Boulogne ? 23 May, 1940. A town under siege. A rampant German panzer division hammers at its gates. Panic in the street and chaos on the docks. Air Raids. Frightened refugees and dispirited Allied soldiers scramble to escape. Churchill sends battalions of the Irish and the Welsh Guards, to help the French garrison stem the German tide.
Pegasus Bridge And Merville Battery
On D Day, 6th June 1944 the greatest seaborne assault ever was launched against Hitler's Fortress Europe onto the beaches of Normandy. This battlefield guide tells in detail, how these objectives were achieved and relates the battles to the area as it is today. The book contains details of museums, memorials, cemeteries, tours and associated organisations all of which will unravel the history of the area to the visitor and armchair traveller alike.
Cherbourg - Channel Ports
Following the landings in Normandy, one of the Allies main concerns was how to supply the expanding beachhead. Having cut off the Cotentin peninsula, General Bradley turned his attentions to the port of Cherbourg, the deep-water port nearest to the American landing beaches. However, Hitler had given specific orders that the port must be held until the last man. For over two weeks three divisions battled for the ring of forts surrounding the town and only after heavy casualties was the port taken. It was, however, too late, the Germans had reduced the docks to ruins. This book details this important, yet little known battle, giving a detailed and illustrated account of the events around Cherbourg in June 1944. Visitors to the area will also be able to visit the key sites on a series of tours around the peninsula.
Utah Beach - St. Mere Eglise - VII Corps, 32nd & 101st Airbourne Divisions
This major addition to our Battleground WW2 Series covers the U.S airborne and seaborne landings on the Cotentin Peninsula on D-Day 6 June 1944. It tells a dramatic story of near disastrous drops by the U.S 101st (The Screaming Eagles) and 82nd (The All American) Airborne Divisions and how they gallantly regrouped and gained their objectives at St Mere Eglise and Carentan. Meanwhile the 4th U.S Infantry Division were the first American seaborne troops to land (at Utah) followed closely by the 90th Infantry Division.This book graphically describes how these divisions eventually linkedup and succeeded in cutting off the vital port of Cherbourge.The book also describes the 'big picture' leading up to D-Day and is particularly interesting in its revelations about the notorious 'Operation Tiger' when over 700 American troops died during training.
The world famous monastery at Monte Cassino was a key strongpoint on the Nazis' Gustav Line blocking the Allied advance on Rome. From January to March 1944 there were four distinct battles for Cassino which was fiercely defended by German elite forces. Troops from USA, Britain, Poland, Canada, France, India and New Zealand were all thrown into the fray with appalling loss of life.
Das Reich - 2nd SS Panzer Division Das Reich - Drive to Normandy, June 1944
The infamous SS Das Reich Division was resting in Montauban, South West France when the Allies invaded Normandy in June 1944. When ordered to rush North, they ran into a series of French Resistance, SAS and SOE delaying actions. This ruthless Division reacted violently and their reprisals culminated in the Massacre at Oradour. This book tells the story of those heroic and tragic days from the British, French and German viewpoints.
From the Rhine to the Eagle's Nest
This book is a chronology of the Rise and Fall of the Third Reich and the famous victory drive of the Seventh Army. It starts at the Worms… Rhine bridgehead and moves quickly onto Aschaffenburg, before describing the Hammelburg Raid to release US POWs. Driving South through Karlstadt the Army seized crossing of the River Mainz at Wurzburg (which has a fine castle). The seizure of Nuremberg was hugely symbolic and this beautiful city was the scene both of the infamous Nazi Rallies and of course the War Crimes Tribunals. The road to Munich, always worth visiting (bierfest or no bierfest!) is via the Danube crossings and the books takes in the liberation of the appalling Dachau Concentration Camp and the battle at the SS Barracks. Munich was the centre of Hitler's early life and represented his powerbase. He was imprisoned here and wrote Mein Kampf. The book climaxes with the approach to the Alps and the superb Eagle's Nest, so popular with tourists.