WWII in real time

Allied troops charge west in Egypt, crashing into German & Italian lines shaken by air, artillery & naval bombardment. New York Times map shows the offensive: https://t.co/1vwSdygLZ3 RealTimeWWII photo

After a night of heavy shelling of Axis lines, Allied troops charge forward in Egypt as battle erupts around insignificant desert village of El Alamein: https://t.co/muO8JR9SQW RealTimeWWII photo

As Allied forces in Egypt begin a major new offensive, British General Montgomery sends a personal message to men under his command: "Together, we will hit the enemy for six, right out of North Africa…" https://t.co/oD5kMJo4pz RealTimeWWII photo

Allied 8th Army in Egypt- with troops from UK, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, India, Poland & France- all ready for offensive versus Rommel and the Germans & Italians under his command.

Biggest concentrated artillery bombardment since First World War is smashing Axis lines around El Alamein, Egypt. One British artilleryman: "The heavens were ablaze & the sky was lit by thousands of searing flashes." https://t.co/9fzKPNwYN5 RealTimeWWII photo

Egyptian desert is thundering with a vast artillery barrage; 1000 guns are firing, marking the beginning of an Allied offensive to smash Afrikakorps. https://t.co/ZPmqHWumJL RealTimeWWII photo

First snow of the year fell in Stalingrad today, as Red Army & Axis continue their vicious battle for control of the city- winter is coming. https://t.co/9BJlgvbtw9 RealTimeWWII photo

German crew refuse to release panicking Soviet prisoners locked in Palatia's hold as she sinks, shooting Russians who get in their way. Nearby ships only rescue rafts if they have Germans onboard. 986 people, mostly non-Germans, drown.

A New Zealand Air Force torpedo bomber has attacked & sunk the German ship MS Palatia off the coast of Norway. Onboard are almost a thousand Soviet prisoners of war, being sent for slave labour in Nazi-occupied Norway. https://t.co/tfzVddgXPT RealTimeWWII photo

Japanese gunners must carry their disassembled artillery, one piece each, silently through dense jungle; 10,000-strong assault force eat on the move, sleep on trail.

Japanese on Guadacanal continue their secret march on the "Maruyama Road": a jungle track 32km long, 55cm wide, each man carrying his rifle, 12 days food & 1 artillery shell apiece.

Japanese General Masao Maruyama is leading 10,000 elite troops, nicknamed the "Emperor's Own" along a narrow Guadacanal trail through the jungle, to assault US Marines.

Japanese engineers are cutting a narrow jungle path across Guadacanal, hoping to sneak up on US Marines & force Americans off the Solomon Isles.

German forces have captured Stalingrad's Tractor Factory (now almost totally ruined), gaining a crucial strongpoint in the north of the city. New York Times map shows Red Army pushed to the edge of the Volga: https://t.co/C5U7K2WbiV RealTimeWWII photo

UK government is denouncing new German plans to kill captured Allied "commandos" as "Nazi war crime"; promise "summary justice" will be used to revenge the dead.

Hitler particularly infuriated by British commandos tying hands of captives during raids, & possibly shooting those trying to escape. 1,376 Allied prisoners of war in Germany are now kept in shackles; Canada has retaliated by shackling German PoWs. https://t.co/7hLffLln8L RealTimeWWII photo

Hitler: "Sabotage & terror troops of the British & their accomplices, who act not as soldiers but as bandits, will be ruthlessly eliminated." Read more of secret German order: https://t.co/zpLAGaxVo4

Hitler issues "Commando Order": any Allied soldiers captured on sabotage missions behind German lines, even if in uniform, must be "be slaughtered to the last man".

British brides ordered to avoid long prewar dress styles, save cloth for military uniforms, & try new "austerity wedding pattern". https://t.co/I2yn0fC21E RealTimeWWII photo

UK has launched a "clothing austerity" campaign. British women are being urged to raise hemlines, narrow their skirts, and use less fabric to help the war effort: https://t.co/UGWaX7cVTE RealTimeWWII photo

Bunker 13 – RAF Blakelaw

July 2020

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.



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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