The Glider Pilot Regiment Society will hold its annual service at the National Memorial Arboretum, Staffordshire, on 11th May.
Officially formed in 1942, the Glider Pilot Regiment was an elite unit of the British Army. It was made up of volunteers from other parts of the Army. Only those who achieved the highest standards were selected for flying training, initially on powered aircraft before progressing to gliders. Training was perilous and many volunteers were killed in flying accidents.
Those who made it went on to fly huge unpowered aircraft, capable of carrying troops, jeeps, artillery and even tanks. They achieved extraordinary feats of flying, landing behind enemy lines and taking up arms to fight beside the troops which they carried into battle. They adopted whatever role was required of them and, as a result, became known as “Total Soldiers”.
The Regiment took part in major operations in WWII, including D-Day and Arnhem, and performed overseas service in post war years, until it was disbanded in 1957. During its short existence, many who served with the Regiment were killed. The service is taking place to commemorate these men.
The service is open to all members of the public and is free to attend. It commences at 11:00 sharp on 11th May. It is recommended to arrive by 10:00.
The Arboretum is situated on Croxall Road, Alrewas in Staffordshire (postcode DE13 7AR). For overnight visitors, there is wide range of accommodation in nearby Lichfield.
For further details please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org