The Netherlands / Monument
‘De Naald’ was the first monument that was built in Oosterbeek to remember the war. Even though in times of scarcity, building materials were collected and the monument was revealed in 1947.
The green in front of the Hartensteinlaan was used by the British airborne troops to attract attention from the supply aircrafts. Unfortunately, droppings didn’t go well here either. After the British troops were evacuated and the battle was over, the field was covered with abandoned behind vehicles and supplies.
Within a year after the return of the civilians in Oosterbeek, who had to evacuate because of the Battle of Arnhem, it was decided to establish a war monument on the field in front of the Hartensteinlaan. Already in 1945, civilians collected money for this monument. In times of scarcity, in a village where the destruction of the war could be seen everywhere, building materials were reserved for the monument instead of using it for the reconstruction of the village.
Major-general Urquhart, commander of the 1st Airborne Division, laid the first stone in 1946. One year later, the monument was revealed by Dutch queen Wilhelmina. Even nowadays, the monument ‘De Naald’ plays an important role during the yearly commemorations around the Battle of Arnhem.
Four images can be seen on the monument: landing paratroopers, woman from Oosterbeek treating the wounded, help from the local resistance and the heroic fighting by the Airborne troops.