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The Blitz - 14th November 1940

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Kaga simpson
Peacehaven, East Sussex
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301 of 327  Mon 7th Nov 2016 11:15am  
Member: Joined Sep 2014  Total posts:1811

McSporran, a very good try. The field on the right, and farther right, you need the canal bridge in the bottom right hand corner, the railway at the top - the four bombs were equal distant apart across the field, slightly diagonal, it's close to half-mile. To breech the canal had to be just below your picture, where the canal was on an embankment - through the bridge it was high banks. To fit the four in he had to get the distance right, and he was probably looking at a 1939 English map, so the distance between the 1st and last bomb, and the canal and the railway, had to be equal. A difficult judgement, he failed by a couple of yards or less. Most people thought he was after the station, but I didn't think so - he hit the line outside the station, the coaches would roll down the embankment, and if really successful, the canal flooding would have mixed in as well, it was well worth the effort. Is there a date for the raid? Thanks and regards, Kaga.
The Blitz - 14th November 1940
Kaga simpson
Peacehaven, East Sussex
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302 of 327  Mon 7th Nov 2016 5:57pm  
Member: Joined Sep 2014  Total posts:1811

McSporran, sorry I got your map all wrong, but my son has just walked in helped me out, so you can now see were the craters were, and how close it was. Thanks again Kaga.
The Blitz - 14th November 1940
DBC
Nottinghamshire
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303 of 327  Sat 12th Nov 2016 7:48pm  
Member: Joined Apr 2010  Total posts:170

When this raid occurred it was a full "bomber's" moon. This year Monday November 14 also sees a "super moon", with the moon closest to earth since 1948.
The Blitz - 14th November 1940
Kaga simpson
Peacehaven, East Sussex
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304 of 327  Sun 13th Nov 2016 3:51pm  
Member: Joined Sep 2014  Total posts:1811

Yes, it was and we saw them coming, three dots appeared on the left hand side of the moon, then three more behind them, we could now see they were aircraft, and three more behind them and so on, about five in a row, then a gap, as the last three of the block left the right hand side of the moon three more appeared on the left and another block passed over the moon, all in close formation like guards on parade, not one out of step not one out of line, unmolested they flew on, as the third block came to the left hand side of the moon we dived back into the shelter as another lot of explosions hurled into the inferno below, for it was near ten at night, we had come out of the shelter during a lull, in the shelter we huddled together, it was the uncertainty of not knowing if the next one was ours that was the fear. Later we found out the aircraft were much higher than the barrage balloons ceiling, too high for the searchlights to be effective, and the guns had less than 15 seconds to fire from the plotter's position, all three just a deterrent to the aircraft not to fly low.
The Blitz - 14th November 1940
foroner
Coventry
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305 of 327  Mon 2nd Jan 2017 10:14pm  
Member: Joined Aug 2014  Total posts:2

Hi all persons. This is a shot in the dark on here but I have tried off and on to find out if there is any way I can find out who the ARP's were in Coventry during "The Blitz". My mum lived in Hillfields. I have been informed she was an ARP. Basically I am trying to track down confirmation. I would appreciate any help in this endeavour. Regards, Mick.

Question

The Blitz - 14th November 1940
TonyS
Coventry
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306 of 327  Tue 7th Feb 2017 1:49pm  
Moderator: Joined Jan 2011  Total posts:1540

Looking down the TV Guide I see there is a film called "The Blitz on Coventry" showing on the Movies4Men channel (goodness knows why!) at 14:55 TODAY (and again at 15:55 on the +1 version of the same channel) The description reads: An in-depth documentary describing the intense bombing raids carried out by the Luftwaffe during World War Two on the city of Coventry. I can't recall whether this is the film that although titled Blitz on Coventry deals more with the "Midlands" in general and just passes a mention of the Coventry raids. I shall record it and see. Yep, it's looks like I was right. It is actually named "The Blitz on the Midlands" Angry Edited by member, 7th Feb 2017 3:12 pm
The Blitz - 14th November 1940
Not Local
Bedworth
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307 of 327  Fri 10th Nov 2017 5:20pm  
Member: Joined Feb 2014  Total posts:183

Those of you who have followed the Wyken Slough topic will recall a report in the Midland Daily Telegraph about the rescue of a 16 year old youth and a local woman from the waters of Wyken Slough in January 1940. Kaga Simpson remembered that the unfortunate young man had been killed in the Coventry Blitz on 14 November 1940 not long after his 17th birthday. A few of us looked at the official records and noted that the location of the death was recorded as ‘Outside Wootton House, Coventry Rd’. I wondered if this was Coventry Rd in Bedworth but ‘Argon’ recalled Wootton House as being a Longford address. With Kaga’s approval and assistance I decided to see what else I could find. The Wootton family were well known in Bedworth as the owners of a hat factory and later a hosiery works. My friend Ann’s Uncle George who is 93 years old and a Bedworth man said that the three substantial Victorian houses at the corner of Coventry Rd and Park Rd in Bedworth were the homes of various members of the Wootton family and were known as ‘The Woottons' houses’. Vince Taylor from Bedworth Heritage Centre confirmed that there was no bomb damage near to those houses. In Longford Rd, Longford stood a big house called ‘Southfields’ which was owned by the same Wootton family. Vince Taylor told me that a house at 131 Longford Rd belonging to a member of his wife’s family had been badly damaged in the blitz and nearby properties had been destroyed. A quick trip to Longford Rd showed numbers 111–115 had been replaced with one modern house. These houses would have been almost opposite to ‘Southfields’, the Wootton’s house. Jane Hewitt at the Coventry Blitz Resource Centre provided further information about this young man, crucially that his death occurred ‘Outside Wootton House, Coventry Rd, Longford’. I then made a further check of the record of fatalities and discovered that our unfortunate 17 year old had not been alone at the time of his death. Killed alongside him was his 15 year old neighbour. My wife and I visited Lentons Lane Baptist Church where we were helped by the minister - Rev. Matt Jeffrey, and a lovely lady from his congregation. We were told that the 17 year old boy’s cousin, also aged 17, had died just a few weeks afterwards. I received further help from Paul and Sheila Whitehead from Longford Baptist Church who consulted members of their church and were able to confirm that ‘Southfields’, the big house in Longford Rd, was known as ‘The Wootton’s house’. Kaga remembered being at school with the younger brother of one of the deceased young men, and recalled talk about an accident, possibly involving an army vehicle, or a motorcycle. I have looked at the Midland Daily Telegraph for November and December 1940 but could not find any specific mention of the young men concerned. However there were almost daily reports of pedestrians, cyclists, motorcyclists and motorists dying in road accidents on the pitch black roads of the blackout. One of the boys had been a member of the Air Defence Cadet Corps so Kaga wondered if they had been engaged on messenger duties with the Home Guard with a big house like ‘Southfields’ a likely spot for a Home Guard post. It had been my intention to report my findings in full but at least one family still has descendants living locally so I don’t want to bring back sad memories. I have therefore purposely not referred to their names. My conclusion is that these two young men from the same close knit village community were killed outside the Wootton’s house on Longford Rd which is of course the Coventry road. The confusion over the location could have been down to the way it was written down, maybe by someone from outside the city who was unfamiliar with street names. The death of the third boy from the same community so soon afterwards was an added tragedy. At this time of the year we remember those who died in war or as a result of war but this year my thoughts are very much with those two young men who died so young on 14 November 1940 and their cousin who died so soon afterwards.
The Blitz - 14th November 1940
Kaga simpson
Peacehaven, East Sussex
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308 of 327  Fri 10th Nov 2017 5:58pm  
Member: Joined Sep 2014  Total posts:1811

Not Local. Thank you, no words can express my gratitude for your effort in the time and work for the information you have traced. The boys from birth were almost like brothers to me up until that fatal night.
The Blitz - 14th November 1940
Not Local
Bedworth
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309 of 327  Fri 10th Nov 2017 6:03pm  
Member: Joined Feb 2014  Total posts:183

No problem Kaga. You are not in a position to do the research so I was happy to help. Regards. Roger
The Blitz - 14th November 1940
argon
new milton
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310 of 327  Fri 10th Nov 2017 8:31pm  
Member: Joined Jun 2016  Total posts:86

Not Local, you are right about the Wootton house that I mentioned in Longford Rd, it was Southfields, my apologies, poor memory I am afraid. I wish it was as good as Kaga's.
The Blitz - 14th November 1940
Roger Turner
Torksey
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311 of 327  Tue 14th Nov 2017 12:04pm  
Member: Joined Aug 2014  Total posts:475

On 14th Nov 2017 7:31am, Rob Orland said [What happened on THIS day in Coventry's history?]: 14th Nov 1940 The Blitz! 11 hours of aerial bombardment lay a square mile in the centre of Coventry to ruin.
Thank you for directing us to the anniversary of the Coventry Blitz, I clicked the underlined word and read some of the information. I then clicked at the end, a BBC item written in 2015 by Jennifer Harby, which I read all through. I was a child evacuated during this period (I think, although I was brought back, having whooping cough and so was present during some bombing and we subsequently lost our house in Prince of Wales Road, but only my parents were at home then). Apart from the graphic description she gave of the psychological effect on some of the surviving Coventry population, she also pointed out there was apparently an effect of the bombing of the cathedral on Berlin high command and reports and stark pictures in papers round the world like the New York Times, it seems that 60% of US citizens thought the US should supply the needs of GB without their being in the war. Referring to another of our discussions "why didn`t they re-roof the old cathedral?", I can now see this wouldn`t have been considered at the time, even if for propaganda reasons then, but couldn`t be subsequently after the war, because this was such a strong signal of German "infamy" (maybe, in fact, while this gaunt symbol still stands, the reminder is constantly reiterated).
The Blitz - 14th November 1940
Not Local
Bedworth
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312 of 327  Tue 14th Nov 2017 5:02pm  
Member: Joined Feb 2014  Total posts:183

Further to my post 307. I have been doing some more research and have found that a third 17 year old boy from the same road died in the Nuneaton Emergency Hospital on 15 November 1940. That is all the information that I have, but it seems possible that it was three lads out together who died on that fateful night rather than two. Kaga, I have sent you an email with the details that I have. I have also been told that the houses numbered 111-117 Longford Rd were never built pre-war and then only one modern house was subsequently built in the gap in post-war years. There is another house further up Longford Rd which has completely different features from the neighbouring properties so that one could well be the house that was described to me as completely destroyed in the blitz.
The Blitz - 14th November 1940
Kaga simpson
Peacehaven, East Sussex
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313 of 327  Sun 19th Nov 2017 1:49pm  
Off-topic / chat  

Kaga simpson
Peacehaven, East Sussex
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314 of 327  Sun 19th Nov 2017 3:00pm  
Member: Joined Sep 2014  Total posts:1811

Roger Turner, there's no doubt you would have been brought back, and probably too young to remember, so . . Coventry being a industrial town, the war came early to Coventry. The government did realise about the war and made plans early. In Coventry we had been given gas-masks, air raid shelters, soldiers to build gun-sites, black-outs and evacuation before we had declared war. People had expected the war to begin as the Great War, with epic battles, and great sacrifices. We were in a very harsh winter, there was over ten feet of snow down the 'Slough'. But in the absence of real war, rules were difficult to enforce and parents were reclaiming their evacuated children although most of the schools were closed, gas-masks were left at home. Food, petrol, heating and the blackout, which caused thousands of injuries in the first few months, the shortages, the rations. By January, the war was in its fifth month, and not a shot had been fired - we began to wonder what all our sacrifices were for, what it was all about. The air of unreality hung in the air, the Phoney War
The Blitz - 14th November 1940
Roger Turner
Torksey
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315 of 327  Sun 19th Nov 2017 7:18pm  
Member: Joined Aug 2014  Total posts:475

Yes thanks Kaga, I never really got my war in order - born May 1935, I would have been 5 in 1940 - so it is only flashes I remember. I think I was `up town` when the IRA bombed it (pushchair?) I can remember being on my tricycle (just before the war) coming back to my home in Prince of Wales Road with a cardboard box full of apples on the handlebars that I picked up at "apple ampas" at Oldfield Road. Next is being enrolled at Centaur Road School, but I don`t remember attending there, so if it was September 1940 (age 5) could I have been evacuated before the Blitz? Anyway I remember being evacuated to Napton with my three year old brother - he went to a farm "The Shepherds", I went to an old couple with a little cottage by the road, 2 dormer windows and my bedroom was behind one of the dormers - I believe I didn`t want to go home, but I would guess it was from there I went back to Coventry with the whooping cough. I was also in Coventry and Warwickshire hospital at sometime early in the war (I think) with swollen glands in my neck - would it be possible to date that in anyway - would patient records be lodged anywhere?
The Blitz - 14th November 1940

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