~ COMBINED OPERATIONS ~

WW2 land, sea and air forces of the Allied Nations planning, training and operating together as a unified force on amphibious raids and landings against the enemy.

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 Hundreds of thousands of visits each year to 200  web pages & 3000 photos.  News & information at the bottom of this and every web page.

You can show your appreciation for those who served the Allied cause in WW2, by 'liking' the Combined Ops Facebook page.

~ VISITING THE MEMORIAL ~

Photo August 2013 - a few weeks after the dedication ceremony.

Your act of remembrance will ensure that the great achievements of an earlier generation are not forgotten by their descendants who daily benefit from their courage and sacrifice.

The memorial is in the grounds of the National Memorial Arboretum which is 27 miles NNE of Birmingham. It was constructed in early 2013 and is, inevitably, beginning to show its age. Over the next year, we will ensure it's restored to its former glory in good time for the 75th anniversary of D Day in June 2019.

[Map courtesy of Google Map Data 2017.]

If you'd like to delve more deeply into the history of the project or to see a photographic record of the memorial's design, development, construction and dedication, please visit the Memorial Index page.

I do hope you enjoy your visit and if you wish to provide feedback we'll be very pleased to hear from you.

Have a nice day!

Geoffrey Slee

Geoff Slee

 ~ Preparing for Your Visit ~ 

The National Memorial Arboretum (NMA) is a special place of remembrance for an ever increasing number of people and a fascinating destination for everyone. If you've not been before, check out what facilities, information and help are available to get the most from your visit.

You'll find up to date information on the NMA website at... http://www.thenma.org.uk/plan-your-visit/

[Aerial view of the NMA, courtesy of Google Earth].

The Combined Operations Memorial is a good 10 minute walk from the visitor centre but, for the less ambulant, there are electric scooters, wheelchairs (recommend pre-booking to avoid disappointment) and golf style buggies.

The memorial is located in a tranquil corner of the Arboretum down by the River Tame where there are several wooden benches nearby, some of which are in the photo at the top of this page. The lovely open view of the River Tame and its wildlife, is, on a nice day, an ideal setting for a picnic or a place for quiet reflection. However, there's not much shelter in the area, so it's advisable to go prepared if the weather forecast is poor.

I'm delighted to report that in early October 2018, the memorial was looking much better than it has for a number of years largely as a result of the recent cleaning and grouting of the paved area and the erection of a new, improved information display, which looks as good as new after a year in the open. However, the grass was in need of some TLC to remove weeds and encourage more luscious growth in the spring of 2019 and the Sitka spruce tree looked sickly, perhaps because of the drought conditions in the summer. Both concerns have been reported to the Arboretum grounds team. The tall strip of nettles along the riverside in the vicinity of the memorial, has been cut back to once more open up a lovely vista of the river and its wildlife. On a nice day, it's a lovely place to linger for a while on nearby seats

~ Feedback

For over two years after the dedication ceremony in July 2013, our small band of dedicated volunteers maintained the memorial to a good standard. However, early in 2016, due to changes in the personal circumstances of some volunteers, we were unable to continue.

We're now very much dependent on the NMA authorities for keeping the memorial and its surroundings in good shape. The remaining members of our maintenance volunteers continue to undertake monitoring visits but your feedback, be it praiseworthy, critical or neutral, will be warmly welcomed and greatly appreciated at anytime.

Please send your comments and photos (if any) from your mobile device, camera or computer to geoffslee@blueyonder.co.uk . Close-ups of anything of concern and general views, will be most welcome.

 

News & Information

Memorial Maintenance

We have a small band of volunteers who take turns to visit the memorial each month, particularly during the growing season, to undertake routine maintenance such as weeding keeping the stones and slabs clear of bird dropping, lichen etc. and reporting on any issues. If you live near the National Memorial Arboretum and would like to find out more, please contact us.

Remember a Veteran

You can pay a personal tribute to veterans who served in, or alongside, the Combined Operations Command in WW2 by adding their details and optional photo to our Roll of Honour and They Also Served pages on this website.

Read the Combined Operations prayer.

Events and Places to Visit

To organisers: Reach the people who will be interested to know about your Combined Operations or war related event by adding it to our  webpage free of charge.

To everyone else: Visit our webpage for information on events and places to visit. If you know of an event or place of interest, that is not listed, please let us know.

To notify an event or place of interest, click here.

To visit the webpage click here.

Facebook

Why not join the thousands who visit our Facebook page (click on icon above) about the Combined Operations Command in appreciation of our WW2 veterans.

See the 'slide shows' of the dedication ceremony and the construction of the memorial plus the 'On this day in 194?' feature where major Combined Ops events are highlighted on their anniversary dates with links to additional information.

You are welcome to add information, photos and comment or reply to messages posted by others.

Find Books of Interest 

Search for Books direct from our Books page. Don't have the name of a book in mind? Just type in a keyword to get a list of possibilities... and if you want to purchase you can do so on line through the Advanced Book Exchange (ABE). 5% commission goes into the memorial fund.

WW2 Combined Operations Handbook

This handbook was prepared for Combined Operations in the Far East. It illustrates the depth and complexity of the planning process necessary to ensure that the 3 services worked together as a unified force.

 

The Gazelle Helicopter Squadron Display Team

The Gazelle Squadron is a unique team of ex-British Military Gazelle helicopters in their original military colours and with their original military registrations. The core team includes four Gazelles, one from each service; The Royal Navy, The Royal Marines, The Army Air Corps and The Royal Air Force. A fifth Gazelle in Royal Marines colours will provide intimate support for the team. Their crest includes the Combined Operations badge. The last, and possibly, only time the badge was seen on an aircraft was in the early mid 40s. A photo of the Hurricane concerned is included in the 516 Squadron webpage.

New to Combined Ops?

Visit Combined Operations Explained for an easy introduction to the subject.

 

About Us?

Background to the website and memorial project, and a look to the future; plus other small print stuff and website accounts etc. Click here for information.

 

Legasee Film Archive

As part of an exciting social history project, the film company Legasee has recorded interviews with veterans from any conflicts. These  films are now available on line. www.legasee.org.uk

 

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