WWII in real time

Doris: "Our sons watched me to see if I'd cry. To distract them, I turned on the radio- & I heard this song for the first time." https://t.co/c8Mq8Oxk2N

British woman Doris Hart has said goodbye to her husband George, volunteer for the Royal Air Force: "For months he asked me to let him go, til love of country overcame me."

Alan Turing: With Ruthless cancelled "there was very little hope, if any, of deciphering... Enigma for months & months & months - if ever." https://t.co/MdVroX6d91

British codebreakers, based at Bletchley Park, are desperate for a "pinch" of German codes to help their work. Alan Turing & other cryptanalysts are "like undertakers cheated of a nice corpse."

British Naval Intelligence have cancelled Operation Ruthless: Ian Fleming's scheme to steal German codebooks by dressing commandos as wounded Luftwaffe & ambushing a rescue vessel.

Most lethal German U-boat in the Atlantic is U-47, captained by Gunther Prien, nicknamed "the Bull". He dodged 11 British warships to hit this convoy. https://t.co/56CcaBQJ47 RealTimeWWII photo

Four German U-boats have ambushed another Atlantic convoy carrying vital supplies to Britain; 28 UK-bound ships now sunk in last 48 hours, worst two-day loss since war began.

German General Staff are presenting Hitler with plans for Operation Felix: joint German-Spanish invasion of Gibraltar.

"Military experts" canvassed by the New York Times believe that invasion of Iraq is the next target of fascist Axis, to seize oil supply from British Empire. https://t.co/lY2m016Vtr RealTimeWWII photo

Heinrich Himmler, head of SS is now meeting Spanish dictator Franco, trying to persuade him to join Fascist Axis & wage war against Britain.

Nazi occupiers in France, Belgium, Netherlands, & Norway announce anyone found sheltering downed British airmen will be executed.

Warship escorts of convoy are desperately searching for German submarines nearby- not realising U-boats have slipped in between convoy ships to hunt at close range.

A "wolf-pack" of German U-boats has ambushed Liverpool-bound convoy SC7 in the mid-Atlantic; 9 Allied merchant ships sunk so far in 12 hours

Dorothy: "I could hear my sister moaning. The rescuers said it was air leaking out her lungs." Read her story: https://t.co/0dG7cEsBQ3

16-year-old London girl Dorothy James has been trapped in ruins of her house- a sweet shop- since it was hit by a parachute bomb last night. Her parents & 2 sisters were killed by the blast.

To help France's "national regeneration", Jewish & African people have been banned from state & media jobs, as have women: "their place is the home."

Prisoner arriving at Auschwitz are met by Nazi SS Captain Karl Fritzsch, who says: "The healthy survive three months here. Priests, one month, Jews two weeks."

Pilecki & other members of the Polish underground in Auschwitz have created the ZOW, Military Organisation Union, to organise inmates' resistance to Nazi guards.

Pilecki: "On arrival [in Auschwitz], striped men with sticks asked us: 'What is your profession?' Answers like judge, barrister or priest meant being beaten to death."

Captain Pilecki deliberately got himself captured during a round-up by German occupiers of Warsaw a month ago, planning to report on Nazi concentration camps from the inside. https://t.co/xelF7XD5LR RealTimeWWII photo

Bunker 13 – RAF Blakelaw

RAF Blakelaw was a WW2 Royal Air Force Fighter command station based at what is now Kenton Bar in Newcastle Upon Tyne.

Map with waves

It’s location was chosen before September 1938 and a temporary surface station was brought into use by July 1939 to coincide with the formation of 13 group which controlled fighters north of the Humber and throughout Scotland.

The permanent underground bunker was completed and became fully operational on December 3rd 1939 at 23:59hrs.

Although the site is now surrounded by new houses the Bunker still exists and is listed grade II

 The Bunker formed part of the revolutionary air defence system devised by Dowding.

This comprised an integrated air defence system which included:

  • Radar (whose potential Dowding was among the first to appreciate).

  • Human observers (including the Royal Observer Corps), who filled crucial gaps in what radar was capable of detecting at the time (the early radar systems, for example, did not provide good information on the altitude of incoming German aircraft),

  • Raid plotting

  • Radio control of aircraft.

    The whole network was tied together, in many cases, by dedicated phone links buried sufficiently deeply to provide protection against bombing. The network had its apex (and Dowding his own headquarters) at RAF Bentley Priory, a converted country house on the outskirts of London.



Bunker13 Ltd is currently unable to arrange visits to the bunker.


Look North visit 2015

Lights! Camera! Action!

Lights! Camera! Action!

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