[Operation Varsity] (RAF R.136)

Accession Number F02632
Collection type Film
Measurement 17 min
Object type To be confirmed
Physical description 35mm/b&w/silent
Maker RAF Film Production Unit
Place made Germany
Date made 24 March 1945
Access Open
Conflict Second World War, 1939-1945

Item copyright: Copyright expired - public domain

Public Domain Mark This item is in the Public Domain


Operation Varsity was the airborne crossing the Rhine river north of the German town of Wesel by the British 6th Airborne Division. The troops were transported in RAF Horsa and Hamilcar gliders as well as Douglas C47 troop carrier aircraft of the US IX Troop Carrier Command. Opens with shot of 'Arnhem Avenger' chalked on the side of a RAF Horsa glider. Airfield with Horsas being towed to take off postions. Shot taken from a glider cockpit. Short Stirling glider tugs taxi into positions on either side of the glider line. Shot of a chalked message 'Good luck BLA from Blighty RAE'. Stirlings of No 570 Squadron RAF. Hamilcar gliders on runway. Jeeps, motorcycles and 17 Pounder anti tank guns are loaded into Horsas. Camera pans down a line of Hamilcar gliders. Aerial view of the glider line. The operations room with the flight path plotted on maps. Glider troops pose for the camera drinking tea. Troops chalk slogans on the side of the gliders. Troops being briefed by their officers. Crews disperse to their aircraft and emplane. Close-up of two officers A Harley and M Clarke (?). Troops relaxing on airfield playing cards smoking etc. Scene change to mid air shots of gliders under tow and various shots of the formation. The formation crosses the Rhine and C47s can be seen returning from parachute drops. Explosion and fire from a crashed aircraft. Long shot of parachute drops from C47s. Shot taken from glider cockpit during cable release. Gliders on landing approach. Various shots of glider landings. Glider troops deplaning. Horsa glider crashes on landing. Jeeps being unloaded from gliders. Air portable Tetrach tank driving at the landing zone. Various shots of wrecked gliders and parachute caught in trees. Glider troops with captured German infantry. Low level parachute supply drop.

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