News

03-04-2021 LIBERATION HISTORY

Peace. TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE…

April 3rd, 1945: Borne liberated!

March 30th, 1945, Good Friday. Units of the Canadian 2nd Army Corps and the British 30th Army Corps entered the Achterhoek. It was buzzing with rumors; people were living between hope and fear. The liberation of Twente was imminent. In connection with this, members of the Internal Armed Forces (BS) were put on standby in Borne on 31 March. Their headquarters were located in a farm in Hertme. During the day they involved their position that overlooked the Welemansbrug guarded by German soldiers.

March 30th, 1945, Good Friday. Units of the Canadian 2nd Army Corps and the British 30th Army Corps entered the Achterhoek. It was buzzing with rumors; people were living between hope and fear. The liberation of Twente was imminent. In connection with this, members of the Internal Armed Forces (BS) were put on standby in Borne on 31 March. Their headquarters were located in a farm in Hertme. During the day they involved their position that overlooked the Welemansbrug guarded by German soldiers.

Chicken coop

Things got even more exciting when the BS captured and imprisoned 30 German soldiers the next day, first in a chicken coop and later in a stone barn on the Hemmelhorst. When two managed to escape and got help, the improvised prison on the Deurningerweg was ambushed by the Germans. In a shootout, a comrade was killed by his own fire and one was seriously injured. The BS had to go into hiding.

In retaliation, the house near the chicken coop was processed with hand grenades and set on fire. As a means of this incident, the mayor was arrested on the threshold of liberation and told that he would be shot dead at the next action of illegality. Everyone was banned from 3 a.m. All doors and windows had to be closed. Borne was extinct on this Easter Sunday, German soldiers patrolled the streets. But due to large groups of retreating German soldiers towards ‘Heimat’ it could not last much longer. And then it became April 3, 1945. Gunfire intensified and intensified, the fighting in the area was clearly audible. The headquarters of the BS received the news by the evening that Hengelo had fallen, and British army units were moving to Borne. Meanwhile, the Canadians concentrated on the crossing of the Twente canal near Delden and Goor.

Free again!

On the eve, the A-squadron of the 1st Royal Dragoons, a reconnaissance unit, was the first to enter Borne to get a picture of the enemy’s position, strength and capacity. Soon they were followed by infantry soldiers of the 4th Battalion Dorset under the command of LT-Col. W.Q. Roberts, backed by tanks from the Sherwood Rangers. An attempt by the Germans to destroy the Welemans Bridge failed, there was only minor damage. Almost without a fight, our village was in English hands an hour later.

Sixty Germans were made prisoners of war and transferred to café ’t Schip on Hengelosestraat. The liberation of Borne was a fact, the euphoria was great. Suddenly, the five-year nightmare is over. Hertme was also freed the same day. The Germans, who had retreated via Azelo to Bornerbroek, have considered recapturing Borne in order to have more drainage routes available, other than via Almelo, for the retreat. Fortunately, this has been spared our village.

Zenderen

Zenderen a day later. There, too, it was just as exciting. On March 29, the resistance raided the building for Christian Interests, where weapons were suspected. During the robbery, which failed, a German and an Italian were killed. Reprisals failed because the occupier was far too busy making preparations to return home.

Bornebroek

While Borne, Zenderen and Hertme were in a liberation rush, there was still fierce fighting in Bornerbroek. The Canadians had made a landing strip in Zenderen for artillery scouts, small aircraft that supported the shelling of the German positions behind the Twente canal and constantly attacked them. The mutual shelling completely destroyed 33 farms and killed two civilians, including a 1-year-old boy. The then church village, which had already suffered so much from the V-1 shootings in the Nijreesbos and surroundings, was not liberated until 8 April. It paid the heaviest toll.

Dorset Square

Out of gratitude for the liberation of Borne, the Market was renamed Dorsetquare. The liberation of Borne was also in stark contrast to the battles of the Dorset battalion on the battlefields of Normandy after D-Day and during the Battle of Arnhem, where heavy losses were suffered. The battalion left Borne on April 9 and moved into Germany. Before departure, another liberation game was played against BVV Borne on 6 April. The Dorsets were succeeded by the 52nd Regiment Canadian Grenadier Guards. They stayed until Sept. Both had headquarters in The White House.

Liberation celebrations

Queen Wilhelmina asked the Dutch to use her first birthday after the war, 31 August 1945, to celebrate in a grand way. This was lavishly listened to in Borne. A historical-allegorical procession passed through the village with more than 50 cars. In the rush of liberation, ‘Trees has a Canadian’ became one of the most popular entertainment songs, sung by Albert de Booij. It was almost as well-known as Vera Lynn’s “We’ll meet again.” It breathed the spirit of that crazy, sizzling summer of 1945, when the whole of the Netherlands was liberated, celebrated exuberantly and embraced the liberators.

Roll up your sleeves

Ordinary life gradually got back on track. Food remained on the receipt. Fuels such as wood, gas and electricity were scarce. In the Netherlands, military authority reigned. Political offenders were arrested and housed in new camps. The Dutch returned from concentration camps. Slowly, it dawned on us exactly what had happened, how unimaginable the suffering that the war had caused had been. It was time for recovery and renewal.

Forgotten Liberators

In the recording of Borne’s liberation history, the Dorsets are honored and celebrated as our liberators. Out of gratitude, the Market was renamed Dorset Square in April 1945. However, further investigation has revealed that two independent English cavalry regiments, namely the Royal Dragoons and the Sherwood Rangers, were also involved in the liberation acts on 3 April. Next year April 2022 this imperfection wil be restored by the unveiling of two street signs at the Bontekoe in the Rondweg. And that does justice to history.

In the photos (from top to bottom): 1. 4th battalion Dorset moves into Borne with the support of the Sherwood Rangers (near Rabobank); 2. Wehrmacht soldiers in the Grotestraat towards ‘Heimat’; 3; Our liberators: 4th Battalion Dorset, photographed behind ‘The Emperor’s Crown’; 4. Liberation Celebrations 1985: Embrace of Trees by a True Canadian

Source: BorneBoeit.nl, 3 April 2021


April 7th, 2021
We have done this so as not to have to constantly adjust our plans.
The execution of our plans will broadly correspond to the original including a concert of the Fanfare Mounted Weapons on Thursday 7th April 2022. We assume that there will be no more restrictive measures. However, we expect to carry out the unveiling ceremony in slimmed-down form.

March 9th, 2021
The earlier thought implementation dates of our plans have always been pushed forward. We are still faced with the consequences of the Corona measures.
We have now decided to choose a wide margin and to postpone our programme to Thursday

September 8th, 2020
After consultation with local authorities and partners we have rescheduled the ceremonies and festivities to now take place 8 and 9 April 2021.

The concert of the Band of the Mounted Regiments will be held on Thursday 8 April at the Kulturhus in Borne.

An alternative for ceremonies and festivities

The idea for this Freedom Movie originated last Monday (30 March 2020) and has subsequently been elaborated upon in a combined effort with this superb result. The power of the idea (connecting the heroes of the war with those excelling today) in a combined effort by all concerned, has led to an outstanding Borne production.  

 Jan Pierik, Mayor of Borne 

Great news ! “BorneBoeit”, the Borne town website, published a very interesting article about the British Private Fred Nachbaur, the first soldier of the Dorset regiment to enter Borne 75 years ago on 3 April 1945. Fred (94) is invited by the Borne municipality as guest of honour at our ceremonies and festivities on the 2nd and 3rd of April.

Achieved so far

We are delighted to announce the participation of the regimental marching band of the Garde Grenadiers en Jagers on the 3rd of April. This generous offer was made by the Ministry of Defense.

Thanks to the Ministry of Defense will Fanfare Bereden Wapens give a concert on the 2nd of April in “t Wooldrik” Sports Centre with the motto “Tour of Freedom in Concert”. This concert is the start of the festivities initiated to honor the Forgotten Liberators.

Headline: the 3rd of April liberators lay siege to Borne once again.
  • 27 August 2019 the Board of Mayor and Alderman of Borne decided to support the Foundation with € 5400,-
  • The former Dorset Regiment has also been invited to attend the unveiling of the street signs on 3 April 2020.
  • On 3 August 2020 the website vergetenbevrijders.nl (forgotten liberators) went online.
  • The initiators have received a positive response from the Association of Cavalry Officers.
  • On 3 April 2020 the regimental marching band of the Garde Grenadiers en Jagers will accompany the unveiling of the street signs.
  • On 2 April 2020 the “Bereden Wapens” Fanfare Corps will give a concert in “t Wooldrik” Sports Centre with the motto “Tour of Freedom in Concert”.
  • The secretaries of the Royal Dragoons, the Sherwood Rangers Yeomanry and the British Embassy in The Hague have responded positively to the invitations.
  • The initiators have coordinated their plans for 3 April 2020 with the members of the “75 Years of Freedom in Borne” Committee.
  • 2 April 2019 the Board of Mayor and Aldermen of Borne decided to name the municipal ring road after the forgotten liberators: Royal Dragoons and Sherwood Rangers.