The Timeline: The Blitz
Friday 03 September 2010
7 September 1940
In the run up to 7 September, the night the Blitz began, the Luftwaffe had targeted RAF airfields and radar stations for destruction in preparation for the German invasion of the island. When these plans were put on hold, Hitler turned his attention to destroying London. At around 4pm, 348 German bombers escorted by 617 fighters blasted London. Two hours later, using the fires set by the first assault as a guide, a second group of raiders attacked the capital and carried on bombing until 4:30am the following morning. The attack started in the East End before moving to central London leaving more than 430 dead and more than 1600 people badly injured.
15 November 1940
The Luftwaffe returned to London and marked the full moon with the biggest raid of the month. Almost every borough was hit using a new bomb that Londoners nicknamed Satan, which used delayed action. The National Portrait Gallery was hit, as was Westminster Abbey and Euston Station. The previous night, Coventry was also hit in a raid that lasted more than 10 hours and left much of the city devastated.
29 December 1940
The heaviest night of bombing in the Blitz. More bombs were dropped than on any other night causing over 1400 fires including six that were classed as conflagrations due to their severity – one of which covered half a square mile. Eight churches designed by Sir Christopher Wren were destroyed, only the walls of the Guildhall remained and many hospitals and stations were hit. The famous photograph by Herbert Mason of St Paul's Cathedral showing through smoke, appeared on the front page of the Daily Mail on 31 December with the caption "War's Greatest Picture".
10 May 1941
At around 11pm, air raid sirens were heard across the city and the first explosions occurred. Another assault was launched claiming 1,486 lives and destroying 11,000 houses. More than 500 aircraft dropped high-explosive and incendiary bombs that changed the face of the capital. Almost all the major stations were damaged as were 14 hospitals. The Houses of Parliament, Westminster Abbey, the British Museum and Waterloo station were also hit.
11 May 1941
After 10th May, Hitler abandoned the Blitz and most of the Luftwaffe were re-assigned east in preparation for Germany's invasion of Russia. However, sporadic raids, using increasingly larger bombs, continued for several years. The end of the Blitz saw a return of evacuees and the start of the reconstruction of London – even though building materials were in short supply. The docks had been devastated, as had many industrial and residential districts, including the historic heart of the City.
- 1 Home Office says Nigerian asylum-seeker can’t be a lesbian as she’s got children
- 2 What happens to your body when you give up sugar?
- 3 Drugs Live cannabis trial: Hash is less harmful than any other drug, expert claims
- 4 Turkish Airlines flight TK 726 crash-lands on Nepal runway amid dense fog
- 5 Apple and Google users being spied on for a decade because of 'Freak' security flaw
The City of the Monkey God: Archaeologists claim to have found city lost for 1,000 years in remote Honduran jungle
Turkish Airlines flight TK 726 crash-lands on Nepal runway amid dense fog
Japanese island overrun with cats after population explodes
Bubonic plague-carrying fleas found on New York City rats
London property boom built on dirty money
'Jihadi John': CAGE representative storms off Sky News accusing Kay Burley of Islamophobia
Nearly 100,000 of Britain's poorest children go hungry after parents' benefits are cut
Durham Free School: 'Creationism taught at' free school facing closure
Ukip would cut billions from Scottish budget to fund English tax cuts
End of the licence fee: BBC to back radical overhaul of how it is funded
Ukraine crisis: Top Chinese diplomat backs Putin and says West should 'abandon zero-sum mentality'
£7 per hour: Recruitment Genius: A vacancy has arisen for a General Processor ...
£18000 - £22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A great opportunity has arisen ...
£14000 - £16000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Full time and Part time positio...
£45000 per annum: Ashdown Group: An established and reputable Not for Profit o...