65 years ago today British 6th Airborne was involved in the Battle of the Bulge , oh yes the British were there too !!!
The British Airborne involvement was centred on the area south east of Dinant particulary in the area of Hotton and the town of Bure where the Panzer Lehr Divison was intent on making a final effort to breakout from the western tip of the Bulge.
In late December 1944 6th Airborne was rushed from the UK , acros the channel and into the Dinant area. On 3rd January 1945 13th (Lancs) Bn Parachute Regiment began the assault on Bure together with C Company Ox andf Bucks Light Infantry and supported by elements of the 29th Armoured Brigade and the Belgian SAS. 7th ( LI ) Bn Parachute Regiment attacked Grupont on the left flank of the 13th at the same time.
By late evening 5th January 1945 the Panzer Lehr were defeated and the last chance for the Germans to break out was gone.
The fighting had been savage , Bure had been destroyed and casualties heavy.
122 men from 6th Airborne and 3 from the Belgian SAS were killed in action, most of whom are buried in Hotton CWGC.
This article is dedicated to my good friends
A/ CSM Gill Thompson , C Company 2 Ox and Bucks
Cpl John Montgomery A Company 7 (LI) Bn Para Regt
Major Andy Mclaughlin 13 ( Lancs) Bn Para Regt
All three were fighting in the Bure area 65 years ago as i pen this article.