Author Topic: BP in the sights of the Luftwaffe  (Read 1993 times)

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Offline trekbat

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BP in the sights of the Luftwaffe
« on: December 02, 2016, 12:14:05 pm »

Gott in Himmel! (the now-aged readers of Victor / Commando / Battle Picture Library / War Picture Library comics will expect this to be followed by a 'Hande hoch' and or at least an 'Arrrggghhh!' - but not in this instance).


It appears - from a book 'Hitler's Holiday Snaps' (Nigel Clarke) featuring Luftwaffe recon and target photographs - that BP was in the sights of Balkankreuz and swastika adorned aviators.


Or strictly speaking the radio station was.


There is a photo in the book but it is so small  that it is of limited benefit to local historians. However, a search on the internet indicates that it may be possible to buy larger copies (as it is a commercial site I haven't included the URL to avoid breaching forum rules).
 

Offline epiphany

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Re: BP in the sights of the Luftwaffe
« Reply #1 on: December 02, 2016, 01:29:05 pm »
This photograph from the book 'Glimpses of old Queenswoodians' shows members of staff on the Queenswood School Hockey pitch inspecting the crater from the first 1,000 lb bomb to land on British soil - no doubt intended for the BBC transmitting station.




 
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Offline trekbat

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Re: BP in the sights of the Luftwaffe
« Reply #2 on: December 02, 2016, 02:41:48 pm »
Nice photo.

May be it was a Sprengbombe Dickwandig (I've no idea - I just liked the name)



"SD = SPRENGBOMBE DICKWANDIG Medium cased steel weapons and, being either anti-personnel or semi-armour piercing, had a charge-to-weight ratio of 35 per cent explosive; 50, 250, 500 and 1700 kg versions."
https://weaponsandwarfare.com/15985-2/
 

Offline epiphany

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Re: BP in the sights of the Luftwaffe
« Reply #3 on: December 02, 2016, 05:18:29 pm »
Actually, Brookmans Park got away pretty lightly, particularly compared to nearby Potters Bar. Presumably they were trying to hit the railway line. See interactive map:


http://www.bombsight.org/#15/51.7048/-0.2007
 

Offline trekbat

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Re: BP in the sights of the Luftwaffe
« Reply #4 on: December 03, 2016, 10:43:55 am »

I wonder if all incidents are shown. Hatfield sustained one of the most devastating attacks on 3 October 1940 with 21 fatalities (a mass grave for 6 workers can be found in St Luke's Cemetery).


"Bombs fell within a mile of the Hatfield factory one day in every five, but there was only one direct hit on 3 October 1940 when a low flying Ju.88 dropped four bombs on the old 94 Shop, killing 21 people and injuring a further 70. "
http://www.dehavillandmuseum.co.uk/about-us/de-havilland-history/


The de Havilland factory was considered such an important target that the Germans sent Agent ZigZag to do the job on the ground.


Old Hatfield (I think they were probably aiming at the gasometers at the bottom of French Horn Lane - now housing - as Hatfield House was a military hospital. There is an official CWGC site, Hatfield Park War Cemetery, off the Great North Road that holds some of the patients who didn't pull through). 
http://www.bombsight.org/#17/51.76189/-0.21396


Airfield
http://www.bombsight.org/#14/51.7661/-0.2527


Hatfield Road
http://www.bombsight.org/#16/51.7548/-0.2890


Hatfield At War
http://www.ourhatfield.org.uk/page_id__424.aspx

 

Offline epiphany

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Re: BP in the sights of the Luftwaffe
« Reply #5 on: December 03, 2016, 11:13:04 am »

I wonder if all incidents are shown. Hatfield sustained one of the most devastating attacks on 3 October 1940 with 21 fatalities (a mass grave for 6 workers can be found in St Luke's Cemetery).


The map only shows the bombs that fell between 07 October 1940 - 06 June 1941, so just missed the 03 October.

According to this http://www.hatfield-herts.co.uk/features/queenswood.html the Queenswood site actually had 38 bombs hit - although only one shown on map.
 

Offline trekbat

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Re: BP in the sights of the Luftwaffe
« Reply #6 on: December 05, 2016, 02:07:30 pm »

Indeed, sorry, from the dates that should have been obvious (my only defence being that I was distracted by an eczema-covered oik, sitting next to me in the library, muttering to himself. He then proceeded to scratch himself vigorously releasing an odour - which, in the interests of allowing people to retain the contents of their stomachs, I shall merely describe as being most distinctly unlike a rose).


The site dates means that it misses out most of the Battle of Britain and the 'Second Blitz' - the V1 and V2 strikes (when Hatfield was fatally struck by the rarer air-launched V1's)


A description on p180 of 'DH - An Outline of de Havilland History' by C Martin Sharp, indicates that the Hatfield factory was, as to be expected, very much a target (even though the DH.98 Mosquito only made its first flight in November 1940):


"...there were many long interruptions all through that autumn*. Bombs fell within a mile of Hatfield factory buildings on one day in every five, sixty eight high-explosive bombs in one hundred days, so that one week nearly a quarter of the working hours, night and day, were spent in the shelters."


[*1940]


As far as the German spy dropped near Salisbury Hall (on 13/05/1941; arrested the next day and executed in December - p183) is concerned, so far I'm not aware of any information that his presence near the Mosquito secret works was anything other than coincidental.


Introduction to the Phases of the Battle of Britain
http://www.rafmuseum.org.uk/research/online-exhibitions/history-of-the-battle-of-britain/introduction-to-the-phases-of-the-battle-of-britain.aspx




http://www.hatfield-herts.co.uk/warmem/ww2Kciv.html




http://www.flyingbombsandrockets.com/

 

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