466th Bomb Group Monument
To the south inside the hedged area.
A large black marble slab on a black marble plinth standing between two flagpoles. The monument is inscribed in English in white lettering. The inscription is headed by the Bomb Group, 8th Air Force emblems, and a depiction of a B-24 Liberator. The monument was dedicated on June 12, 1992, during the Bomb Group reunion. All Saints Church at Weston Longville contains a 466th Bomb Group Roll of Honor.
Attlebridge was assigned to the United States Army Air Forces (USAAF) Eighth Air Force's 2nd Bomb Wing on 30 September 1942. It was given USAAF designation Station 120. The 466th BG was constituted on 19th May 1943, being activated in August that year. They flew Consolidated’s B-24 ‘Liberator‘ in the ‘H’, ‘J’, ‘L’ and ‘M’ models, and was made of four Bomb Squadrons: the 784th BS (code T9), the 785th BS (code 2U), the 786th BS (code U8) and the 787th BS (code 6L). The 466th would be nicknamed “The Flying Deck” and they would operate solely from Attlebridge.
In February-March 1944 the 466th moved in. The air echelon transferred via the southern ferry route to England, the ground echelon taking the Queen Mary to Greenock. The group flew the Consolidated B-24 Liberator as part of the Eighth Air Force's strategic bombing campaign.
The 466th began operations on 22 March 1944 by participating in a daylight raid on Berlin. The group operated primarily as a strategic bombardment organization, attacking such targets as marshaling yards at Liège, an airfield at St Trond, a repair and assembly plant at Reims, an airfield at Chartres, factories at Brunswick, oil refineries at Bohlen, aircraft plants at Kempten, mineral works at Hamburg, marshaling yards at Saarbrücken, a synthetic oil plant at Misburg, a fuel depot at Dülmen, and aero-engine works at Eisenach.
Other operations included attacking pillboxes along the coast of Normandy on D-Day (6 June 1944), and afterward striking interdictory targets behind the beachhead; bombing enemy positions at Saint-Lô during the Allied breakthrough in July 1944; hauling oil and gasoline to Allied forces advancing across France in September; hitting German communications and transportation during the Battle of the Bulge, December 1944 − January 1945; and bombing the airfield at Nordhorn in support of the airborne assault across the Rhine on 24 March 1945.
The 466th flew its last combat mission on 25 April 1945, striking a transformer station at Traunstein. The unit returned to Sioux Falls Army Air Field, South Dakota in July and was redesignated the 466th Bombardment Group (Very Heavy) in August 1945, and was equipped with Boeing B-29 Superfortresses.
Source of information: www.warmemorialsonline.org.uk, Imperial War Museum War Memorials Register, en.wikipedia.org, www.americanlibrary.uk, aviationtrails.wordpress.com
Source of photos: Google Maps, www.warmemorialsonline.org.uk
SITE OF UNITED STATES ARMY AIR FORCE STATION 120
ATTLEBRIDGE AIRFIELD MARCH 1944 - JULY 1945
FROM THIS BASE THE 466th BOMBER GROUP (H) A UNIT OF THE
EIGHTH AIR FORCE SECOND AIR DIVISION, FLEW 231 COMBAT
MISSIONS IN B-24 "LIBERATOR" AIRCRAFT. THE AIR OFFENSIVE
WAS OVER THE CONTINENT; NORMANDY, NORTHERN FRANCE,
RHINELAND, ARDENNES-ALSACE AND CENTRAL EUROPE.
THIS MEMORIAL WAS DEDICATED 12th JUNE 1992
IN MEMORY OF THOSE WHO SERVED