Holandia / Audiospot
With the advance of the Allies, the Germans fall back to a line, which among other places, runs along this canal. At the beginning of November 1944, Polish soldiers of the 1st Polish Armoured Division make frantic efforts to cross the canal and breach the line.
German troops had built a defensive line on the north side of the Mark Canal. Overnight, on the 3rd of November 1944, Polish troops from the 1st Polish Armoured Division first began a feint toward Terheijden. Then, at Ter Aalst, another unit crossed the canal in inflatable boats and surprised the German troops in their foxholes. After some fighting, the Poles managed to establish a bridgehead.
At the same time, at the Marksluis near Oosterhout, the Poles tried to cross the Mark Canal. That was a lot less successful, as they came under heavy German fire. Eventually, with the support of artillery and fighter aircraft, they still managed to reach the other side. Polish sappers immediately started constructing a Bailey bridge. This was a turning point in the action, the Poles broke through and the bridge was named the Success Bridge.