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    The image is free to reuse for non-commercial purposes under the IWM Non Commercial Licence. By downloading any images or embedding any media, you agree to the terms and conditions of the IWM Non Commercial Licence, including your use of the attribution statement specified by IWM. For this item, that is: © Colin Sweett (WMR-65866)

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Memorial details

Memorial type
Composite
District
Lichfield
Town
Alrewas
County
Staffordshire
Country
England
Commemoration
Regimental Memorials, Second World War (1939-1945)
Maker
A J Robertson (Granite) Ltd., Aberdeen (Mason)
Brunel Engraving Company (Letter cutter / Engraver)
Ceremony
  • Unveiled
    Date: 4 July 2013
    Attended by: General Sir Richard Barrons KCB CBE ADC
  • Dedicated
    Date: 4 July 2013
    Attended by: Local Clergy/Dignitaries
  • Show More (1)
Lost
Not lost
WM Reference
65866
Current location

Memorial is no 424a in Blue Zone on bank of River Tame
near the Allied Special Forces Association Grove
National Memorial Arboretum
Croxall Road
Alrewas
Lichfield
Staffordshire
DE13 7AR
England

OS Grid Ref: SK 1880014862
Denomination: Undefined

View location on Google Maps
Description
A natural stone wall bearing a circular badge of the Combined Operations made of coloured mosaic tiles. The wall stands within a spearhead-shaped slate and stone-flagged area, with three rough-hewn standing stones at each point. The standing stone at the apex bears a tablet with a dedicatory inscription. At the head of the path near the memorial is a rectangular board fixed between two wooden posts. The board has three metal information panels fixed to it with information about the memorial together with an illustration and further text relating to the Normandy Landings. The shape of the area evokes the attack formation adopted by Combined Operations, while the three standing stones represent the Army, Navy, and Air Force respectively. There are also three trees: Ash for the Army, Oak for the Navy, and Sitka Spruce for the Air Force. As a whole, the memorial symbolises the three services working together as a unified force.
Inscription
[Mosaic]: COMBINED OPERATIONS COMMAND/ UNITED WE CONQUER [Stone]: COMBINED OPERATIONS/ COMMAND/ THIS MEMORIAL IS DEDICATED TO THE/ HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF PERSONNEL FROM/ THE THREE SERVICES OF ALLIED NATIONS/ WHO SERVED IN COMBINED OPERATIONS,/ WERE TRAINED BY THEM IN AMPHIBIOUS/ LANDING TECHNIQUES OR TOOK PART IN JOINT/ OPERATIONS IN WORLD WAR II, INCLUDING/ D-DAY./ IT IS ESPECIALLY DEDICATED TO THOSE WHO DID/ NOT RETURN FROM THE FIELD OF CONFLICT, DIED/ DURING REALISTIC TRAINING EXERCISES/ SUFFERED LIFELONG MENTAL AND PHYSICAL/ TRAUMA./ WE WILL REMEMBER THEM. [Board]: COMBINED OPERATIONS COMMAND/ WWW.COMBINEDOPS.COM/ 2013/ [Plaque 1]: ABOUT THE MEMORIAL/ CHURCHILL SET UP THE COMBINED OPERATIONS COMMAND IN THE/ SUMMER OF 1940 TO PREPARE THE ARMY, NAVY AND AIR FORCE/ FOR AMPHIBIOUS RAIDS AND LANDINGS ONTO ENEMY HELD BEACHES./ THE RESULTANT UNIFIED FORCE COMPRISING PERSONNEL FROM THE 3/ SERVICES WAS FORMED WITH THE MOTTO.../ "UNITED WE CONQUER"./ FOUR YEARS OF JOINT PLANNING AND AMPHIBIOUS TRAINING EXERCISES/ CULMINATED IN THE D-DAY LANDINGS WHEN 6,000 SHIPS AND CRAFT,/ 10,000 AIRCRAFT AND 200,000 SERVICE PERSONNEL CAME TOGETHER/ IN THE LARGEST AMPHIBIOUS INVASION FORCE IN HISTORY, A MOMENT/ OF WHICH IS CAPTURED IN THE ILLUSTRATION OPPOSITE./ THE SPEARHEAD SHAPE OF THE MEMORIAL REPRESENTS THE ARCHETYPAL/ ATTACK FORMATION ADOPTED ON COMMANDO RAIDS AND MAJOR/ LANDINGS. THE 3 STANDING STONES AND 3 TREES REPRESENT THE 3/ SERVICES - OAK FOR THE NAVY, ASH FOR THE ARMY. AND SITKA SPRUCE FOR THE/ RAF; TIMBER USED BY EACH OF THE SERVICES IN/ GENERATIONS PAST. THE STONES CAME FROM LOCH FYNE IN SCOTLAND/ WHERE 250,000 PERSONNEL FROM THE 3 SERVICES TRAINED TOGETHER/ IN AMPHIBIOUS WARFARE USING MANY TYPES OF LANDING CRAFT. THE COMMAND ALSO OVERSAW MANY DARING COMMANDO RAIDS/ ALONG THE WESTERN COAST OF OCCUPIED EUROPE FROM NORTHERN/ NORWAY TO SOUTHERN FRANCE AND MAJOR LANDINGS IN NORTH/ AFRICA, MADAGASCAR, SICLY, ITALY, SOUTHERN FRANCE, HOLLAND/ AND BURMA. THE MULBERRY HARBOURS, 21 FUEL PIPELINES ACROSS/ THE ENGLISH CHANNEL CODENAMED 'PLUTO' AND HOBART'S TANK/ADAPTATIONS FOR BEACH CLEARANCE WORK WERE ALSO PART OF THE/ OFFENSIVE STRATEGY CHURCHILL ENTRUSTED TO THE COMMAND. [Plaque 2]: A NoRMANDY BEACHHEAD/ [Illustration]/ NORMANDY, EARLY D-DAY MORNING, 6TH JUNE 1944. THE CO-/ORDINATED SEA, LAND AND AIR OPERATION TO ESTABLISH A BEACHHEAD/ FROM WHICH TO LIBERATE EUROPE WAS GAINING MOMENTUM, BUT THE/ BEACHES AND THEIR APPROACHES REMAINED EXTREMELY HAZARDOUS./ FROM DAVID A THORP'S PAINTING/ "COMBINED OPERATIONS: A NORMANDY BEACHHEAD." A NATION'S GRATITUDE/ ON D-DAY -6, CHURCHILL AND HIS MILITARY ADVISERS STOOD ON THE/ NORMANDY BEACHES TO SEE THE BUILD-UP OF THE INVADING ALLIED/ FORCES. ON RETURN TO DOWNING STREET THAT EVENING HE WROTE TO/ MOUNTBATTEN, WHO HAD BEEN IN CHARGE OF THE COMBINED/ OPERATIONS COMMAND FOR MOST OF THE CRITICAL PERIOD.../ 'TODAY WE VISITED THE BRITISH AND AMERICAN ARMIES ON THE SOIL/ OF FRANCE. WE SAILED THROUGH VAST FLEETS OF SHIPS WITH LANDING-/ CRAFT OF MANY TYPES POURING MORE MEN, VEHICLES AND STORES /ASHORE. WE SAW CLEARLY THE MANOEUVRE IN PROGRESS OF RAPID/ DEVELOPMENT. WE HAVE SHARED OUR SECRETS IN COMMON AND/ HELPED EACH OTHER ALL WE COULD. WE WISH TO TELL YOU AT THIS/ MOMENT IN YOUR ARDUOUS CAMPAIGN THAT WE REALISE HOW MUCH/ OF THIS REMARKABLE TECHNIQAUE AND THEREFORE THE SUCCESS OF THE/ VENTURE HAS ITS ORIGIN IN DEVELOPMENTS EFFECTED BY YOU AND YOUR STAFF OF COMBINED OPERATIONS.'/ (SIGNED) ARNOLD, BROOKE, CHURCHILL, KING, MARSHALL, SMUT/ THIS MEMORIAL TO THE COMBINED OPERATIONS COMMAND IS HERE BECAUSE OF THE/ GENEROUS DONATIONS, SUPPORT, ENCOURAGEMENT AND GOODWILL OF COUNTLESS VETERANS,/ THEIR FAMILIES AND FRIENDS AT HOME AND ABROAD. ITS ASSOCIATED WEBSITE,/ WWW.COMBINEDOPS.COM.N, CONTAINS MANY INTERESTING, FIRST-HAND ACCOUNTS OF THE/ WORK OF THIS EXTRAORDINARY ORGANISATION AND THE GREAT HISTORICAL EVENTS IT WAS/ INVOLVED IN. WITH GRATITUDE TO ALL CONCERNED./ GEOFFREY SLEE, EDINBURGH, 2013.
Inscription legible?
yes
Commemorations
  • Regimental Memorials
    Total names on memorial: 0
    Served and returned: 0
    Died: 0
    Exact count: yes
    Information shown: Undefined
    Order of information: Undefined
  • Second World War (1939-1945)
    Total names on memorial: 0
    Served and returned: 0
    Died: 0
    Exact count: yes
    Information shown: Undefined
    Order of information: Undefined
Components
  • Wall
    Measurements: Undefined
    Materials: Stone
  • Mosaic
    Measurements: depth 25mm, height 1000mm, width 1000mm
    Materials: Ceramic, Metal, Glass
  • Stone of remembrance
    Measurements: depth 500mm, height 2100mm, width 500mm
    Materials: Stone
  • Tree
    Measurements: Undefined
    Materials: Wood - Spruce, Wood - Oak, Wood - Ash
  • Other structure
    Measurements: Undefined
    Materials: Stone
Listing information
Condition
Costs

Site: £1,000
Memorial: £11,000

Trust fund/Scholarship
Yes
Purpose: A trust fund for the purposes of maintaining and developing the memorial and its website in perpetuity.
Sponsorship
Public
Details: Combined Operations Memorial Fund: including donations from veterans, families and friends
Reference

This record comprises all information held by IWM’s War Memorials Register for this memorial. Where we hold a names list for the memorial, this information will be displayed on the memorial record. Please check back as we are adding more names to the database.

This information is made available under a Creative Commons BY-NC licence.

This means you may reuse it for non-commercial purposes only and must attribute it to us using the following statement:

© WMR-65866

For queries, please contact [email protected]