To coincide with the 80th anniversary of Operation Freshman, Dr Bruce Tocher is lifting the veil on the tragic events of this lesser-known mission at the Army Flying Museum in Middle Wallop.
The successful attack on the Heavy Water Facility at Vemork in Norway in February of 1943 is rightly regarded as one of the most daring special forces raids of World War II and over the years, many books have been written about this raid – Operation Gunnerside – also being well portrayed in many films, television series and documentaries.  
However, what is less well known, is the earlier attempt to destroy this target due to concerns from the British War Cabinet that heavy water was being used as part of Nazi Germany’s programme to develop a nuclear bomb. This raid is known as Operation Freshman. A raid that failed with 41 of the 48 soldiers and airmen involved losing their lives.
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Due to the secrecy of the mission which took place in November 1942, very little information was provided to the families of the servicemen at the time, and it was only after the war ended, that the true story emerged.
Dr Tocher will tell the story of the mission and the aircraft involved, including the failures in the navigation and guidance systems and the horrors that emerged from statements made at the war crimes trials.
Tickets to attend the event in the Museum on November 22 at 7pm are £10, with online pay-per-view £6.  
The presentation will also be recorded for catch-up viewing after the event through the museum website.
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