|6th Airborne Division|
The divisional shoulder flash of the airborne forces
|Active||World War II|
3rd May 1943 - 1st April 1948
|Nickname||The Red Devils|
|Motto||Go To It|
|Maj. World War II, or the Second World War, (often abbreviated WWII) was a global military conflict which involved a majority of the world's nations, including Events 1491 - Kongo monarch Nkuwu Nzinga is baptised by Portuguese missionaries adopting the baptismal name of João Year 1943 ( MCMXLIII) was a Common year starting on Friday (the link will display full 1943 calendar of the Gregorian calendar. Events 527 - Byzantine Emperor Justin I names his nephew Justinian I as co-ruler and successor to the throne Year 1948 ( MCMXLVIII) was a Leap year starting on Thursday (link will display the 1948 calendar of the Gregorian calendar. See also Kingdom of Great Britain Great Britain (Breatainn Mhòr Prydain Fawr Breten Veur Graet Breetain is the larger of the two main islands The British Army is the land armed forces branch of the British Armed Forces. Operation Overlord was the code name for the invasion of northwest Europe during World War II by Allied forces Operation Varsity was a joint American&ndashBritish airborne operation that took place in March 1945 towards the end of World War II. A battle honour is a military tradition practised in the Commonwealth countries of the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand D-Day may also refer to Decimal Day in the United Kingdom. D-Day is a term often used in Military parlance to denote Gen. Richard Nelson Gale|
The 6th Airborne Division was an airborne division in the British Army during World War II. General Sir Richard Nelson Gale, GCB, KBE, DSO, MC (1896 &ndash 1982 was a British soldier who served in both world A division is a large Military unit or formation usually consisting of around ten to thirty thousand soldiers The British Army is the land armed forces branch of the British Armed Forces. World War II, or the Second World War, (often abbreviated WWII) was a global military conflict which involved a majority of the world's nations, including
On 23 April 1943 the British War Office ordered that a second airborne division be raised to supplement the original British 1st Airborne Division. The War Office was a former department of the British Government, responsible for the administration of the British Army between the 17th century and 1963 when The 1st Airborne Division was a Military formation that was raised and fought during World War II. The new division consisted initially of key personnel reassigned from 1st Airborne. This included several officers who had fought in North Africa with the 1st Parachute Brigade. The 1st Parachute Brigade was formed during the Second World War as part of the British Army. For example, Richard Gale had raised and commanded the 1st Parachute Brigade. General Sir Richard Nelson Gale, GCB, KBE, DSO, MC (1896 &ndash 1982 was a British soldier who served in both world James Hill had commanded 1st Parachute Battalion. Alastair Pearson had been his second-in-command. Brigadier Alastair Stevenson Pearson CB DSO and 3 Bars OBE MC TD (1915 - 1995 was a baker and farmer and one of the Geoffrey Pine-Coffin had been second-in-command of 2nd Battalion. Colonel Richard Geoffrey Pine-Coffin DSO & Bar, MC ( 2 December 1908 - 28 February 1974) was
The core of the new 6th Airborne Division was formed from the 3rd Parachute Brigade and 1st Airlanding Brigade. The 3rd Parachute Brigade was a military unit of the United Kingdom. History Formed as the 1st Airlanding Brigade Group on 10 Dec 1941 by redesignation of 31st Independent Infantry Brigade Group and assigned 1st Airborne Both were reassigned from 1st Airborne. Lieutenant Colonel James Hill assumed command of 3rd Parachute Brigade while he was recovering from wounds received in North Africa. During World War II, the North African Campaign, also known as the Desert War, took place in the North African desert from June 10, 1940 At 31, Hill was one of the youngest Brigadiers in the British army. The 3rd Parachute Brigade included the 7th, 8th and 9th Parachute Battalions. Each battalion had been recruited regionally. The 7th had been formed from the Somerset Light Infantry. The Somerset Light Infantry (Prince Albert's was an infantry regiment of the British Army. Many paratroopers of the 8th were from the Midlands. This article is mainly about the English Midlands For other uses see Midlands (disambiguation. The 9th was formed from the 10th Holding Battalion, The Essex Regiment. The Essex Regiment was an Infantry regiment of the British Army that saw active service from 1881 to 1958 Lieutenant Colonels Pine-Coffin, Pearson, and Otway were the commanders the 7th, 8th, and 9th Battalions, respectively.
The 1st Airlanding Brigade was renamed the 6th Airlanding Brigade. The 6th Airlanding Brigade was an airborne unit of the British Army during World War II. It included two glider-borne, light infantry battalions: 1st Battalion the Royal Ulster Rifles (Lieutenant Colonel Jack Carson) and 2nd Battalion the Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry (Lieutenant Colonel Michael Roberts). The Royal Ulster Rifles (formerly Royal Irish Rifles) was an Irish Infantry Regiment of the British Army. The Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry was an Infantry regiment of the British Army. Later, the 12th Battalion The Devonshire Regiment (Lieutenant Colonel Dick Stephens), which had been formed recently from coastal defence units, was attached to the 6th Airlanding Brigade. The Devonshire Regiment was an Infantry Regiment of the British Army.
In June 1943, the 5th Parachute Brigade, commanded by Brigadier Nigel Poett, was added. The 5th Parachute Brigade was a war-formed Brigade of the British Army during the Second World War. General Sir Nigel Poett (JHN Poett was a British Army officer best known for commanding the 5th Parachute Brigade British 6th Airborne Division during the It included the 12th and 13th Parachute Battalions. The 12th Battalion (Lieutenant Colonel Reginald Parker) was formed from a Yorkshire battalion, the 10th Battalion, the Green Howards. Yorkshire is a historic county of Northern England and the largest in Great Britain. The Green Howards (Alexandra Princess of Wales's Own Yorkshire Regiment was an Infantry Regiment of the British Army, part of the King's Division The 13th was formed from the 2nd and 4th Battalions of the South Lancashire Regiment. The South Lancashire Regiment (The Prince of Wales's Volunteers was a regiment of the British Army. It was led by Lieutenant Colonel Peter Luard. Lieutenant-Colonel George Bradbrooke's 1st Canadian Parachute Battalion arrived in July 1943. Other units attached to the division included pathfinders, engineers, anti-tank, reconnaissance, medical, and signals units.
In August 1943, the division was reorganized. The Canadians were attached to 3rd Parachute Brigade and the 7th Battalion was assigned to 5th Parachute Brigade. In September 1943, the 6th Airborne Division was almost at its full complement of about 8,500 men. Each parachute battalion consisted of about 650 men. The airlanding battalions were slightly larger with about 750 men each. In February 1944, Parker was made second-in-command of the 6th Airlanding Brigade and Lieutenant Colonel A. P. "Johnny" Johnson assumed command of the 12th Parachute Battalion.
During the last hours of 5 June 1944 as part of Operation Tonga, transport aircraft and towed gliders carried units of the 6th Airborne to Normandy where they would land just prior to the D-Day landings that took place on the morning of 6 June. Events 70 - Titus and his Roman Legions breach the middle wall of Jerusalem in the Siege of Jerusalem Year 1944 ( MCMXLIV) was a Leap year starting on Saturday (link will display full calendar of the Gregorian calendar. This article summarizes British airborne operations during the Normandy Landings. Terminology A "glider" is an unpowered Aircraft. The most common types of glider are today used for sporting purposes Events 1508 - Maximilian I Holy Roman Emperor, is defeated in Friulia by Venetian forces; he is forced to sign a three-year They were to land behind Sword Beach and secure the eastern flank. Some of the objectives included the seizure of the bridge over the Caen Canal (later renamed as "Pegasus Bridge" and the bridge over the Orne River (renamed later as Horsa Bridge) by D Company, 2nd Ox & Bucks (commanded by Major John Howard). "Rolling bascule bridge" redirects here For other types of bridge referred to as "rolling" see Rolling bridge. Canal de Caen à la Mer ( "Canal from Caen to the sea" also called the "Caen Canal") is a small Canal in the department (préfecture "Rolling bascule bridge" redirects here For other types of bridge referred to as "rolling" see Rolling bridge. The Orne is a River in Normandy, within northwestern France. It discharges into the English Channel at the port of Ouistreham. Major John Howard, DSO (December 8 1912- May 5 1999 was a British Army officer who led the World War II assault on a bridge in Normandy after And also the destruction of the Merville Battery by Lieutenant-Colonel Terence Otway's 9 PARA, both of whom were some of the first units to land and achieve their objectives. The Merville Gun Battery was a coastal fortification in Normandy, France in use as part of the Nazi's Atlantic wall built to defend continental Europe Lieutenant-Colonel Terence Brandram Hastings Otway DSO, ( 15 June 1914 - 23 July 2006) was a British soldier The landings proved successful, though many units were scattered across much of Normandy. The area around Pegasus and Horsa were successfully defended until they were eventually relieved, having repulsed numerous counter-attacks by the Germans, later on 6 June by Lord Lovat's 1 Special Service Brigade, followed later by elements of the British 3rd Infantry Division. Events 1508 - Maximilian I Holy Roman Emperor, is defeated in Friulia by Venetian forces; he is forced to sign a three-year Brigadier Simon Christopher Joseph Fraser 15th Lord Lovat DSO, MC, TD ( 9 July 1911 - 16 March 1995) was The 1st Special Service Brigade was a brigade of the British Army, formed during World War II it consisted of battalions of the British Army Commandos and The British 3rd Infantry Division, known at various times as the Iron Division, 3rd (Iron Division or as Iron Sides, was originally formed in 1809
On 12 June, during the attack on Bréville, British artillery was bombarding it when a stray shell fell short and hit a group of British officers, killing Lieutenant-Colonel A. Events 1381 - Peasants' Revolt: in England, rebels arrive at Blackheath. Bréville-les-Monts is a commune in the Calvados department in the Basse-Normandie region in northern France. P. "Johnny" Johnson (CO 12 PARA) and badly wounding Brigadiers Kindersley (CO 6 Airlanding Brigade) and Lord Lovat (CO 1st Special Service Brigade). The commanding officer ( CO) is the officer in command of a Military unit. Hugh Kenyon Molesworth Kindersley 2nd Baron Kindersley, CBE, MC ( 1899 - October 6, 1976) was a British businessman and banker Brigadier Simon Christopher Joseph Fraser 15th Lord Lovat DSO, MC, TD ( 9 July 1911 - 16 March 1995) was
From June to August the Division successfully defended the area to the east of the Orne river. Orne is a department in the northwest of France named after the Orne River. On 2 August 1944 the division became part of the First Allied Airborne Army. Events 338 BC - A Macedonian army led by Philip II defeated the combined forces of Athens and Thebes in the The First Allied Airborne Army was an Allied formation formed on 2 August 1944 by the order of General Dwight D In mid-August the division took part in the advance towards the Seine and early in September it returned to Britain to recuperate and reorganise, having suffered over 4,000 casualties (killed, wounded, and missing). The Seine (sɛn in French) is a slow flowing major River and commercial waterway within the regions of Île-de-France and Haute-Normandie
On 16 December the Germans launched Operation Watch on the Rhine , a last-gasp offensive against the Allies via the Ardennes forest. Events 755 - An Lushan revolts against Chancellor Yang Guozhong at Fanyang, initiating the An Shi Rebellion The Ardennes Offensive (16 December 1944 – 25 January 1945 was a major German offensive launched towards the end of World War II through the forested Ardennes Mountains For the political subdivision of France see Ardennes (department. The division was rushed to Belgium shortly afterward to assist in repulsing the attack. The fighting took place in awful weather conditions and ended in mid-January 1945. Year 1945 ( MCMXLV) was a Common year starting on Monday (link will display the full calendar
By March 1945, the Allies had advanced into Germany and had reached the River Rhine. Events in March American Red Cross Month Fire Prevention month ( The Philippines) Women's History Month ( United Year 1945 ( MCMXLV) was a Common year starting on Monday (link will display the full calendar The Rhine was a formidable natural obstacle to the Allied advance, but if breached would allow the Allies to access the North German Plain and ultimately advance on Berlin and other major cities in Northern Germany. Following the 'Broad Front Approach' laid out by General Dwight D. Eisenhower, the Supreme Allied Commander of the Allied Expeditionary Force, it was decided to attempt to breach the Rhine in several areas. General of the Army (GA is a five-star General officer and is the highest possible rank in the United States Army. Dwight David "Ike" Eisenhower (October 14 1890 – March 28 1969 was President of the United States from 1953 until 1961 and a five-star general Supreme Headquarters Allied Expeditionary Force (abbreviated as SHAEF, pronounced "shāf" was the headquarters of the Commander of Allied forces  Field Marshal Bernard Montgomery, commanding the British 21st Army Group devised a plan to allow the forces under his command to breach the Rhine, which he entitled Operation Plunder, and which was subsequently authorized by Eisenhower. Please see " Field Marshal " for other countries which use this rank Field Marshal is the highest military rank of the United Kingdom Field Marshal Bernard Law Montgomery 1st Viscount Montgomery of Alamein, KG, GCB, DSO, PC, (məntˈgʌmərɪ əv ˈæləmeɪn Commencing on the night of 23 March, 1945 during World War II, Operation Plunder was the crossing of the Rhine river at Rees, Plunder envisioned the British Second Army, under Lieutenant-General Sir Miles Dempsey and the U.S. Ninth Army under Lieutenant General William Simpson crossing the Rhine at Rees, Wesel, and an area south of the Lippe Canal. The British Second Army existed in both the First and Second World Wars World War I During World War I, the army was formed on Please see " Lieutenant General " for other countries which use this rank Lieutenant-General ( Lt Gen) is a senior rank The Ninth United States Army was one of the main US Army combat commands used during the campaign in northwest Europe in 1944 and 1945 This article is about a United States military rank For other countries that use a similar rank see Lieutenant General. Lieutenant General William Hood Simpson (May 18 1888 – August 15 1980 was a distinguished U Rees is a town in the district of Cleves in the state of North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. Wesel (ˈveːzəl is a city in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. This article is about the district Lippe. For the like-named river see Lippe River. To ensure that the operation was a success, Montgomery insisted that an airborne component was inserted into the plans for the operation to support the amphibious assaults that would take place, which was code-named Operation Varsity.  Three airborne divisions were initially chosen to take part in Varsity, these being the British 6th Airborne Division, the US 13th Airborne Division and the 17th Airborne Division, all of which were assigned to the US XVIII Airborne Corps. The 6th Airborne Division was an Airborne division in the British Army during World War II.
However, as planning for Operation Varsity began, it soon became obvious that there was a lack of suitable transport aircraft to transport all three of the airborne divisions proposed for the operation, and as such the 13th Airborne Division was dropped from the operational plan, primarily because it had no combat experience, whereas the 6th Airborne Division had participated in Operation Tonga, the British airborne landings during Operation Neptune, and the 17th had seen combat in the Ardennes. This article summarizes British airborne operations during the Normandy Landings. The Normandy Landings were the first operations of the Allied Invasion of Normandy, also known as Operation Neptune and Operation Overlord, during For the political subdivision of France see Ardennes (department.  The plan for the operation was therefore altered to accommodate the two remaining airborne divisions, the British 6th Airborne and the US 17th Airborne Division. The two airborne divisions would be dropped behind German lines, with their objective to land around Wesel and disrupt enemy defences in order to aid the advance of the British Second Army. Wesel (ˈveːzəl is a city in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. To achieve this, both divisions would be dropped near the town of Hamminkeln, and were tasked with a number of objectives; they were to seize the Diersfordter Wald, a forest that overlooked the Rhine and had a road linking several towns together; several bridges over a smaller waterway, the River Ijssel, were to be seized to facilitate the advance; and the town of Hamminkeln was to be captured. Hamminkeln is a town in the district of Wesel, in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. River IJssel (ˈɛi̯səl sometimes called Gelderse IJssel (" Gelderland IJssel" to avoid confusion with its Hollandse IJssel namesake  Once these objectives were taken, the airborne troops would consolidate their positions and await the arrival of Allied ground forces, defending the territory captured against the German forces known to be in the area.
|”To disrupt the hostile defence of the RHINE in the WESEL sector by the seizure of key terrain by airborne attack, in order[. . . ]to facilitate the further offensive operations of the SECOND ARMY. "|
[Operational orders for 6th and 17th Airborne Divisions] 
The plan for the operation called for the division to land in the northern half of the operational area, with its principal objectives to seize the high ground east of the town of Bergen, to attack and capture the town of Hamminkeln, and finally to take control of several bridges over the River Ijssel.  It would then hold the territory it had captured until it linked up units from the American 17th Airborne Division, which would land in the southern section of the operational area, and finally advance alongside 21st Army Group once the Allied ground forces had made contact with the airborne forces. To avoid the heavy casualties incurred by the British 1st Airborne Division that had occurred during Operation Market-Garden, both Allied airborne divisions would only be dropped after Allied ground units had crossed the Rhine and secured crossings; the two divisions would also be dropped only a relatively short distance behind German lines, to ensure that reinforcements would be able to link up with them after only a few hours and they would not be isolated. The 1st Airborne Division was a Military formation that was raised and fought during World War II. Operation Market Garden ( September 17, 1944 – September 25, 1944) was an Allied military operation fought in the Netherlands 
The first British airborne unit to land was the 3rd Parachute Brigade, commanded by Brigadier James Hill. The 3rd Parachute Brigade was a military unit of the United Kingdom.  The Brigade actually dropped nine minutes earlier than it was scheduled to be, but despite this the unit was successfully dropped onto Drop-Zone A, where it was engaged by heavy small-arms and 20mm anti-aircraft fire. The Brigade suffered a number of casualties as it engaged the German forces in the Diersfordter Wald, but by 11:00 the Drop-Zone was practically clear of enemy forces and all battalions of the Brigade had formed up.  The key town of Schnappenberg was captured by the 9th Parachute Battalion in conjunction with the 1st Canadian Parachute Battalion, the latter unit having lost its commanding officer to German small-arms fire only moments after he had landed.  However, despite taking casualties the Brigade cleared the area of German forces, and by 13:45 Brigadier Hill could report that the Brigade had secured all of its objectives. 
The next British airborne unit to land was the 5th Parachute Brigade, commanded by Brigadier Nigel Poett. The 5th Parachute Brigade was a war-formed Brigade of the British Army during the Second World War. General Sir Nigel Poett (JHN Poett was a British Army officer best known for commanding the 5th Parachute Brigade British 6th Airborne Division during the  The Brigade was designated to land on Drop-Zone B and achieved this, although not as accurately as 3rd Parachute Brigade due to poor visibility around the Drop-Zone, which also made it more difficult for paratroopers of the Brigade to rally. The Drop-Zone came under heavy fire from German troops stationed nearby, and was subjected to shellfire and mortaring which inflicted casualties in the battalion rendezvous areas.  However, 7th Parachute Battalion soon cleared the DZ of German troops, many of whom were situated in farms and houses, and the 12th Parachute Battalion and 13th Parachute Battalion rapidly secured the rest of the Brigades objectives.  The Brigade was then ordered to move due east and clear and area near Schnappenberg, as well as engaging German forces who were gathered to the west of the farmhouse which had been taken as the headquarters for the 6th Airborne Division. By 15:30 hours Brigadier Poett reported that the Brigade had secured all of its objectives and linked up with other British airborne units. 
The third airborne unit that formed a part of the 6th Airborne Division was the 6th Airlanding Brigade, commanded by Brigadier R. The 6th Airlanding Brigade was an airborne unit of the British Army during World War II. H. Bellamy.  The Brigade was tasked with landing in company-sized groups and capturing several objectives, including the town of Hamminkeln.  The gliders containing the airborne troops of the Brigade landed in Landing-Zones P, O, U and R under considerable anti-aircraft fire, the landing being made even more difficult due to the presence of a great deal of haze and smoke. This resulted in a number of glider pilots being unable to identify their landing areas and losing their bearings, resulting in a number of gliders landing in the wrong areas or crashing.  However, the majority of the gliders survived, allowing the battalions of the Brigade to secure three bridges over the Ijssel that they had been tasked with capturing intact, as well as the town of Hamminkeln with the aid of the 513th Parachute Infantry Regiment which had been dropped by mistake near to the town. During World War II, the 513th Parachute Infantry Regiment (513th PIR was a regiment of the 17th Airborne Division of the United States Army. The Brigade secured all of its objectives shortly after capturing Hamminkeln. 
The war, however, continued elsewhere and the 5th Parachute Brigade was deployed to the Far East in July to take part in the campaign against the Japanese, with the intention of the rest of the division following it. The 5th Parachute Brigade was a war-formed Brigade of the British Army during the Second World War. The Far East is a term often used by people in the Western world to refer to the countries of East Asia. The war ended suddenly in August with the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and the Japanese formally surrendered on 2 September. The Japanese city of ( is the capital of Hiroshima Prefecture, and the largest city in the Chūgoku region of western Honshū, the largest of Japan 's ( is the Capital and the largest city of Nagasaki Prefecture in Japan. Events 44 BC - Pharaoh Cleopatra VII of Egypt declares her son co-ruler as Ptolemy XV Caesarion. Thus, the Division's move was halted and the 5th Brigade was employed in operations in Malaya and Singapore to assist in the disarmament of the Japanese occupation forces there. British Malaya loosely described a set of states on the Malay Peninsula that were colonized by the British from the 18th and the 19th until the 20th century Singapore The Brigade subsequently moved to Java, Dutch East Indies, where it attempted to assist in maintaining order against hostile nationalist forces intent on preventing the Dutch from returning to the colony. Java (Jawa is an Island of Indonesia and the site of its Capital city Jakarta. See http//enwikipediaorg/wiki/WikipediaFootnotes for an explanation of how to generate footnotes using the tags and the template below The division left with the arrival of substantial forces from the Royal Netherlands Army in April 1946. The Royal Netherlands Army ( Koninklijke Landmacht) is the land forces element of the Military of the Netherlands. Year 1946 ( MCMXLVI) was a Common year starting on Tuesday (link will display full 1946 calendar of the Gregorian calendar.
Elsewhere, the rest of the division had moved to Palestine in September 1945, taking part in internal security duties against Zionist organisations known as Irgun, Haganah and the Lehi (group) who were trying to expel the British. The Palestine Mandate, was a set of protocols or articles that formed a multilateral legal and administrative agreement History of Zionism|Timeline of Zionism|World Zionist Organization|Zionist political violence Zionism is an international political movement that originally supported the Irgun (ארגון shorthand for HaIrgun HaTzva'i HaLe'umi BeEretz Yisra'el, he הארגון הצבאי הלאומי בארץ ישראל "National Military Organization Haganah ( Hebrew: "The Defense" ההגנה was a Jewish Paramilitary organization in what was then the British Mandate of Palestine Lehi ('lɛxi Hebrew acronym for Lohamei Herut Israel, "Fighters for the Freedom of Israel" לח"י - לוחמי חירות The 6th Airborne continued to carry out operations against the groups in difficult circumstances until they were disbanded on 1 April 1948 just before the British left Palestine. Events 527 - Byzantine Emperor Justin I names his nephew Justinian I as co-ruler and successor to the throne Year 1948 ( MCMXLVIII) was a Leap year starting on Thursday (link will display the 1948 calendar of the Gregorian calendar.
In the present-day British Army the 16 Air Assault Brigade (named to perpuate the 16 Parachute Brigade) is numbered in honour of the 1st Airborne and 6th Airborne divisions.
The Division order of battle for the invasion of Normandy was as follows:
Bernage, Georges (2002). Red Devils In Normandy. Heimdal, 9. History of Tillerbyen The area where Tillerbyen has been built was initially Swamp, but it was drained in the 1930s as an Airport was planned here ISBN 2840481596.
Hickman, Mark. Pegasus Archive. Retrieved on 2006-12-07. Year 2006 ( MMVI) was a Common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. Events 43 BC - Marcus Tullius Cicero assassinated 1696 - Connecticut Route 108, one of the oldest highways
Mills, T. F. . Land Forces of Britain, the Empire, and Commonwealth. Retrieved on 2006-12-09. Year 2006 ( MMVI) was a Common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. Events 536 - Byzantine General Belisarius enters Rome while the Ostrogothic garrison peacefully leaves the city
Saunders, Hilary (1985). The red beret: The story of the parachute regiment at war 1940-1945. Battery Press. ISBN 0898390877.