The unsuccessful British airborne drop at Arnhem in September 1944, immortalized in the film A Bridge Too Far, was one of the most dramatic incidents of World War II. No story of the Arnhem campaign is more filled with courage and devotion than that of the British support units, such as the Royal Army Service Corps and the Royal Army Ordnance Corps. Some support units were to land with the parachute and glider troops and set up supply dumps at the front line, while others were to drops supplies from British and American aircraft flying over the battlefield.
The unforeseen presence of a German field marshal and two SS divisions quickly turned Arnhem into a trap for the British paratroops. RASC and RAOC men on the ground did double duty maintaining supplies and fighting the encircling Germans with infantry weapons. The supply aircraft came under increasing German fire with each passing day, and there were numerous incidents of dispatchers in burning planes waiting until they were over the shrinking British perimeter before dropping supplies, sometimes moments before the aircraft crashed or exploded. This very detailed account draws on numerous eyewitnesses and also covers museums and monuments in today's Arnhem.