Shetland "Hands Across the Sea" Norway



Online translation of
individual pages
 is available free by
clicking the icon below

Most pictures can be clicked on to view a bigger version

Refugees arrive in Scalloway, having
safely come across on the 'HITRA'

Operations such as the Shetland Bus required the Germans to use a lot of men and resources to maintain an effective defence of the strongly indentured coastline of western Norway. The Shetland Bus missions were one of the factors that convinced the Germans that it was through Norway that the Allied invasion would come.

Gradually the infamous Festung Norway ('Fortress Norway') was built up until the whole western coast was full of gun sites. There was a consistent flow of new divisions of men and coastal artillery to Norway.

One of the many agents' radios smuggled
into Norway by the Shetland Bus

When the Allies invaded Normandy in June 1944 as many as 340,000 Germans and a large part of the German Navy were stationed in Norway with little chance of getting out.

Supplies to be sent to Norway, packed into oil drums
and wooden German boxes to avoid investigation

For Norwegians the Shetland Bus operation was of great psychological importance. To them it was proof that there was life outside occupied Norway. Large quantities of arms and technical equipment were landed, as well as a regular stream of agents going into Norway and refugees escaping from Norway. An idea of the scale of the operation is gained when it is realised that the day the Germans surrendered in May 1945 there were 60 illegal radio stations transmitting and most of them had got their equipment from Shetland.


Wartime Shetland ] Wartime Norway ] The Operation ] The Boats ] The Crewmen ] The Agents ] SJH School Project ] WWW Links ] Bibliography ] Memorial & Mural ]
Design and Authoring by Force 10
Made in Shetland