WWII in real time


Images of female factory workers have become shorthand for ever-growing mobilisation of USA for war; like this "We Can Do It!" poster by Pittsburgh artist J. Howard Miller, created to encourage workers at the Westinghouse Company. It was only on display for two weeks, last month. https://t.co/jirgWj9oqU RealTimeWWII photo

Up to five million women across the USA have joined war industry, taking opportunities for factory work left vacant by men joining military- including rare chances for black women to get well-paying jobs. https://t.co/DmxQQAEBP0 RealTimeWWII photo

Over 300,000 women are now working in American aircraft industry, 65% of the industry’s total workforce- up from under 1% before USA joined the war. Like this Texan turret lathe operator building transport planes: https://t.co/hiCVgfFStP RealTimeWWII photo

LIFE magazine features American female factory workers, replacing men on the front line of US industry; like Florence “Woo Woo” DiTullio Joyce, one of 2000 "Winnie the Welders" working in the war effort. https://t.co/zugkZAXrl6 RealTimeWWII photo

To help confuse night-flying Allied bombers, Germans have built the Kruppsche Nachtscheinanlage, a decoy 6 miles away from real site, with dummy industrial buildings lit like a poorly disguised steelworks. 64-75% of British bombs hit the fake factory.

442 Royal Air Force aircraft have raided Essen, targeting the Krupp steel works. Only 153 planes dropped their bombs within three miles of the target- usual poor accuracy for British "strategic bombing". https://t.co/a5DTMYOWwl RealTimeWWII photo

British Bomber Command has launched the "Battle of the Ruhr", planning strategic air raids to cripple German industry in the Ruhr Valley. First target: Essen. New York Times map shows the Allied bombing targets in Europe since start of this year: https://t.co/GQYwUnhCV9 RealTimeWWII photo

Indian independence campaigner Mohandas Gandhi has ended a 21-day hunger strike in British captivity, protesting his arbitrary detention by the colonial Raj government. He drank a glass of fruit juice. https://t.co/ryhyk4ZYKt RealTimeWWII photo

Polish government-in-exile, in London, for the first time reports evidence of a Nazi "murder camp" at Auschwitz, German-occupied Poland, executing Polish dissidents & Jews.

15th annual Academy Awards ceremony has been held in Los Angeles, USA; strong wartime flavour to this year's Oscars. Winner of Outstanding Motion Picture, Best Director & Actress is "Mrs. Miniver", drama about a British housewife during the Blitz: https://t.co/i8R3egMpyt

Stalin promotes himself to Marshal of the Soviet Union; Communist Party newspaper Pravda declare him to be the "greatest strategist of all times & all peoples." https://t.co/pkpawuotqq RealTimeWWII photo

Brilliant counterattacks by German Afrikakorps under command of Rommel have slowed the Allied advance into Tunisia- but now American, British & French are closing in: https://t.co/ho4dXWwb3Z RealTimeWWII photo

Mareth Line- built by French colonial government of Tunisia as the "African Maginot Line", & captured intact by Germans- stretches across the rocky Tunis desert in a network of trenches & bunkers: https://t.co/iyHhQJL4X5 RealTimeWWII photo

In Tunisia, Allied advance has trapped German & Italian forces with their backs against the Mediterranean- British troops are closing on Axis defences of Mareth Line. https://t.co/mJRo7froZa RealTimeWWII photo

Cameras on Australian Air Force planes record “smashing of the Bismarck convoy” in an Allied propaganda coup (although they overestimate 22 . Japanese ships destroyed). Watch now: https://t.co/l3rObHYEn4

Battle of Bismarck Sea ends after three days of relentless Allied air attack on Japanese troop convoy headed for New Guinea. 12 Japanese ships sunk, more damaged, ~3000 troops killed, attempt to reinforce South Pacific outposts a failure. 6 US & Australian planes shot down. https://t.co/fn6mw7zixU RealTimeWWII photo

Stalin ordered Vlasov not to withdraw his Second Shock Army when Axis forces threatened to surround them near Leningrad; Vlasov refused to be evacuated away from his men, but now condemns "Stalin's disregard for the life of the Russian people." https://t.co/hanSc3aLji RealTimeWWII photo

Soviet General Andrey Vlasov, captured by Germans last year after his troops were encircled, has defected to the Nazis. He's published an open letter, "Why Have I Taken Up the Struggle Against Bolshevism", urging Russians to rise against Stalin. https://t.co/Qu8VZgZjqZ RealTimeWWII photo

Dr. Martin has been ordered to complete silence, as British government censors news of the disaster, for fear of inspiring German attacks- or embarrassment at admitting the death toll. More: https://t.co/8OLnxPooMk

Dr. Joan Martin treats victims from Bethnal Green: "The first wet, mauve, body was carried into the hospital. Wet, because when they pulled the bodies from the shelter all they did was to dump them on the pavement & throw water on them. Mauve, because they were all asphyxiated."

Bunker 13 – RAF Blakelaw

Feb 2021

See News page for announcement!

Letter of Support from RAF Museum Received.

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.

 

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


 

Look North visit 2015

Lights! Camera! Action!

Lights! Camera! Action!

See the results of the filming here

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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