On Saterday evening 29 april 2017 the history program Andere Tijden pays attention to the Battle of  Groningen. In recent decades Hardly any attention has been paid to the severe battle
In the aftermath of the Second World War in the town and province Groningen. Many years ago from my father I've got this book published in 1945 about the battle of Groningen. The photographs show a destroyed downtown. But in the Netherlands only the Battle of Arnhem got wide fame. One did not know better that the war in the spring of 1945 was ended soon and the Netherlands was quickly liberated in the weeks preceding 5 May 5 1945.

Book about the liberation of Groningen my father bought in 1945. He wrote his signature and Then address in it.


In 1960 my father kept a newspaper article about the liberation of Groningen I found in that book.

Recording for the program Andere Tijden at Paterswoldseweg 188 Groningen, where on 13 april 1945 the tank of Fred Butterworth, belonging of tankregiment Fort Gerry Horse, was hit by a German Panzerfaust. He was killed in action. Een plaquette on the facade reminds of this event.

Recording for the history program Andere Tijden on Paterswoldseweg at Groningen.

The young enthusiastic JoŽl Stoppels from Groningen heard the stories about the war and liberation of Groningen on his 14th. He was caught by it. In recent years he had acces to the Canadian War Archives and gained a very good picture of the course of the liberation of the north of the Netherlands through his study of various allied operations during the Second World War in the Netherlands. To him it became clear that dispite the fall of Nazi Germany the Germans were in no way planning to surrender. The canadians had the illusion to capture the city of Groningen within one day and the liberation of the rest of the province could be done quickly. But the reality was completely different. A severe battle developed, destroying the city of Groningen. House fighting, man to man. The battle lasted 4 days. 13 up to 16 april 1945. More than 40 soldiers were killed. Afther the war a Canadian soldier sighed "The fights in Groningen were the worse of the whole war".

The Canadian veteran Stan Butterworth (92) about the loss of his brother Fred during the Battle of Groningen.

After capturing the town the final battle moved to the countryside of Groningen near Delfzijl. Villages like Wagenborgen and Appingedam layd under fire from the coastal batteries at Delfzijl and Termunten. Only after heacy fighting towns and districts were liberated. Only after 2nd May 1945 the battle ended and Delfzijl was liberated. Just a few days before the German capitulation.

Recording for the program Andere Tijden at the Nansum bunker.

Joel Stoppels founded Battlefield Tours. Through the Battlefield Tours he wants to share the knowledge with people who are interested in World War II. "The hard battle in the Netherlands deserves not to be forgotten," says Stoppels. Under the name of Battlefield Tours Groningen he started his summer tours in the summer of 2012. For students of secondary education and upper secondary education, Joel brings to life the personal history of liberation with various educational programs. The young war historian considers it important that the memory of the war be kept alive. The generation that has resulted in it is getting smaller. For young people it is important that they know that freedom is not just something. There was very hard fighting in the Second World War. Joel Stoppels is a member of the International Guild of Battlefield Guides, badgenumber 70.
Together with my wife Elly (left on the photograph) we got to know JoŽl by the  association Friends of the Airborne Museum  with whom he works together. We made several city walks with him in Groningen and made two battlefield tours in the area of Delfzijl-Pocket.
In recent years JoŽl Stoppels was on TV in the broadcast of the regional channels RTV Noord en Oog TV in recent years. In 2015, he played an important role in the re-enactment of the Battle of Groningen on Paterswoldseweg and Grote Markt.
He reaches a next highlight in his quest to raise awareness of the Battle of Groningen, when the History Program Andere Tijden (Other Times) pays attention to this subject in its television broadcast on Saturday evening, April 29, 2017. In co-operation with JoŽl Stoppels. Prior to this broadcast on NPO1, there will be a premiere in the Molenberg at Delfzijl on 28 April. More reports on ARS Website,

Canadians with pipes and drums on Herebrug at Groningen

German soldiers surrender to the Canadians at Delfzijl station.

Uitwierderweg Delfzijl 2 May 1945