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   Holland

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After a few days rest the 4th Lincolns moved to Willemstad on the southern bank of the River Maas estuary. Patrols reported that all the ways into the town were covered by enemy fire.  A small party was sent forward under a white flag demanding surrender, or failing that to ask for the several thousand Dutch inhabitants to be evacuated before the battle.  The German commander refused to surrender but he agreed to arrange for the Dutch to leave.  A pathetic procession of Dutch men, women and children with their few possessions trudged through the Lincolns' lines. 

After an artillery bombardment "A" and "D" Companies advanced into Willemstad early the next day--to find no-one there!  All the Germans had slipped away during the evacuation of the Dutch civilians and had crossed to the other side of the estuary.

The war was quickly coming to an end.  146 Brigade had a victory parade in Utrecht on 7th May 1945.  Led by the band of the Lincolnshire Regiment playing "The Lincolnshire Poacher", the men had the utmost difficulty in moving through the wild, rapturous cheering crowd.   

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