Headquarters Diorama at Airborne Museum Oosterbeek restored

Foto: Airborne Museum

Oosterbeek, The Netherlands – The Headquarters Diorama, part of the Airborne Museum presentation since 1978, has been made future-proof. More than 200 collection pieces have been cleaned, preserved and where necessary, restored.

An exciting and time-consuming operation! The restored diorama can now be seen again in the Airborne Museum.

Centre of defence

headquarters diorama
R.E. Urquhart in front of Villa Hartenstein

On September 18, 1944, Villa Hartenstein became the headquarters of the British 1st Airborne Division. The villa became the nerve center of the British defense of a shrinking area in and around Oosterbeek. In the early days of the battle, the ground and first floors were mainly used, but as the shelling increased, the British troops moved to the basement. Here the division command post was established from which Major General RE Urquhart and his staff directed the British and Polish troops.

headquarters diorama
R.E. Urquhart on the right

In this basement you will find the Headquarters Diorama, which has been a continuous part of the museum presentation since 1978. The diorama shows Major General Roy Urquhart and his staff at the command post. The diorama was opened in 1978 by Major General Urquhart (1901-1988) himself. Over the years, this heritage has become fragile.

Extensive maintenance was required in order to be able to continue to show museum visitors this diorama in the future. The collection items have now been professionally cleaned, preserved and restored where necessary.

Airborne Museum

The Battle of Arnhem, part of Operation Market Garden, had a major impact on the course of the Second World War. In the Airborne Museum we tell the story of the Battle of Arnhem.

The Airborne Museum is located in Villa Hartenstein, the headquarters of the British in September 1944. In the museum you walk through the Battle of Arnhem step by step, listen to the moving stories of British, German and Polish soldiers and meet civilians and their special testimonies.


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