D-DAY ASSAULT GLIDERS

ORIGINS

Germany devised and pioneered the troopcarrying glider concept. It took some while for Britain to follow, but its developments in the field came to make a major contribution to Allied military success

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Waco CG-4A 42-77451 was built by the Ford Motor Company in Kingsford, Michigan, and was towed into action by a C-47 from the 439th Troop Carrier Group at Upottery, Devon.
CHRIS SANDHAM-BAILEY
The impressive scene at Tarrant Rushton, Dorset, on the evening of 6 June 1944. Handley Page Halifax tugs of Nos 298 and 644 Squadrons prepare to take into the air a phalanx of troop-carrying gliders, mainly General Aircraft Hamilcars but led by two Airspeed Horsas.
KEY COLLECTION
No 1 GTS Hotspur IIs on tow, while a Hawker Hector tug peels away having released another formation.
AEROPLANE

Allied expectations that the Versailles Treaty, signed on 28 June 1919, would successfully discourage a technologically inquisitive and modern German society to simply abandon previous achievements in the field of aviation proved extremely naïve. Consequently, the desire to beat the restrictions placed on flying became an obsession that, to observers throughout the world during the 1920s and 1930s, simply manifested itself in the apparently innocuous pastime of sport gliding. In reality it became the origin of the assault glider tactic.

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