From September 1940 until May 1941, Britain - especially Greater London - suffered heavily under a barrage of day and night-time raids by the then mighty Luftwaffe; raids which killed some 20,000 people and destroyed or damaged one million homes during what came to be known as the London Blitz. A ‘baby blitz’ followed, from January to May 1944, which was destined to be the final manned bomber offensive by a much depleted Luftwaffe. Afterwards, there came the last gasp, the final blitz on London, this time delivered by the V1 flying bombs and V2 rockets which were aimed at the capital. Overall, the V weapons killed or seriously injured 31,000 in London and destroyed or seriously damaged 1.6 million houses throughout Britain. Yet despite all this, British industry, economy and morale remained largely intact.
Group Captain Nigel Walpole grew up in London during the Blitz and he has traced the full history of the V1 'doodlebugs' and V2 rockets that terrorised so many at this time. He looks at the infamous missile development site at Peenemunde and the engineers who brought Hitler's horrific visions to life. He reports his vivid memories of the three Blitz campaigns and the countermeasures taken in response to them. Having been granted direct access to the history of the V weapons, he describes the evolution, development, production deployment and launch of the flying bombs and rockets. Whilst acknowledging the terrible damage inflicted by these weapons, Nigel also recognises them as an example of Germany’s extraordinary capacity for innovation and determination during one of the darkest periods of world history.
ISBN: 9781526722881Format: HardbackAuthor(s): Nigel WalpoleFirst Publishment Date: 11 April 2018