WWII in real time


Stalin & his generals, still convinced Germans will strike again at Moscow this summer, are keeping many Red Army divisions in reserve in the north as south falters before new Axis assault.

German forces have reached the outskirts of the city of Voronezh, daring panzer assault capturing the still intact bridge over the river Devitsa, which Red Army failed to destroy.

American FBI has announced the capture of eight Nazi spies, smuggled into USA by German submarine to conduct campaign of sabotage & terror bombings. They do not announce infiltrators were caught after being betrayed by leader George Dasch. https://t.co/pTD96Ly1hJ RealTimeWWII photo

British troops at El Alamein mock the officers in Cairo:
"We never left the Nile
Or past the Sphinx's smile
We fought our war in the hotel bar
& they gave us the Africa Star."

As war rages in the desert near El Alamein, front-line Allied troops suffering in Egyptian sands are angry at their staff officers: "bludgers & skivers fighting Cairo's bars & brothels". https://t.co/vywufC1iXE RealTimeWWII photo

Axis forces in the USSR have reached the river Don, near target city of Voronezh, south of Moscow: German summer offensive is smashing past Red Army who are intent on defending Moscow. Hungarian soldier stands on the Don bank: https://t.co/tWxw99Z36h RealTimeWWII photo

Japanese occupied Alaskan islands of Kiska & Attu without resistance- now Growler has torpedoed 2 ships, killing 200. https://t.co/XMEVUlNiF2 RealTimeWWII photo

US Navy is belatedly striking back at Japanese invaders of Alaska: submarine USS Growler torpedoes 3 Japanese destroyers off Aleutian Islands.

Amongst Dutch Jews summoned for Nazi deportation is Margot Frank, 16; her family, like many in Amsterdam, plan to go into hiding to escape the German occupiers. https://t.co/tBalEOYupT RealTimeWWII photo

First thousand Dutch Jews being deported by Nazis are given a short list of objects to take with them, maintaining lie of German "labour camps". Many will be killed as soon as they arrive, rest imprisoned in brutal concentration camps. https://t.co/nXE7fBdF7R RealTimeWWII photo

Dutch government & police are cooperating to enforce the Nazi's deportation orders; most Dutch Jews comply with German round-ups, expecting to return home after the war. https://t.co/lHYTyoEx8r RealTimeWWII photo

Nazi occupiers of Netherlands are ordering 1000s of Dutch Jews to report for deportation to "work camps" in Germany. https://t.co/piwXVgWd0W RealTimeWWII photo

On Independence Day, President makes a grim address to USA. Roosevelt says: "Not for 166 years... has this anniversary come in times so dangerous to everything for which it stands." https://t.co/AI1aPEdECa

German General Von Manstein claims that Russian soldiers will suicidally kill themselves with grenades rather than surrender: "Asiatics have contempt for all life, even their own."

Most Soviet soldiers fight to the bitter death. Only the top Red Army commanders have been able to escape Sevastopol by submarine. NKVD are massacring German prisoners to prevent them from rejoining Axis ranks.

Sevastopol has fallen. After two months of brutal, relentless Axis assault, Soviet defenders of shattered port surrender. https://t.co/T4i4PnXimc RealTimeWWII photo

Huge Chrysler-built "Victory sirens" have been installed along East Coast to warn American cities of any approaching bombers; loudest siren ever, audible 25 miles away. https://t.co/FAnuVVdjge RealTimeWWII photo

400 air raid sirens are wailing across New York: city is marking Fourth of July with mass drills for bombing preparedness. https://t.co/jo5GBv28n9 RealTimeWWII photo

Today is 4th July, American Independence day & a holiday in USA- but many workers refuse to stop production, & businesses remain open to aid the war effort. https://t.co/zBnaMeO4pn RealTimeWWII photo

Allies at El Alamein have counter-attacked, catching exhausted & overstretched Axis forces off guard; 2000 Italians taken prisoner. https://t.co/g4o7Ia7HkZ RealTimeWWII photo

History

The bunker was built in 1938 – 1939 at what was Kenton Quarry, and under the Dowding System of air defence became the headquarters of No 13 Group Fighter Command, which stretched from Humberside to The north of Scotland, including Northern Ireland.

Commanded by Air Vice-Marshal Richard Saul, the bunker was a typical MOD design of the time, with everything centred around a two storey high operations room complete with curved glass observation posts above a plotting table. There was also a plant room that enabled the circulating air to be filtered, and indeed the ventilation system is still intact.

The bunkers’ day in history came on the 15th August 1940 when around midday the controller sitting high above the plotting table realised that the north east coast was under attack by a cavalcade of German fighter bombers from Luftflotte 5. Scrambling fighters from sector airfields around the North east and further afield, the Germans were sufficiently repulsed and never mounted a daylight attack again over the north east.

Around the end of 1940, bunkers known as Group Filter Rooms were built near each Group HQ bunker to filter out the important information. So the site at Kenton Bar had a sister bunker built (of different layout) at what are now the Blakelaw flats just off Blakelaw Road. The Filter bunker  housed the local Sea Cadets and was thought for many years to be the 13 Group HQ. It is now mothballed and the entrances sealed

When the decision was taken to build the filter bunker, the area that 13 Group covered was reduced, and No 14 Group was formed at Inverness to cover the area north of Montrose. In 1943, the bunker was decommissioned as 13 Group HQ, with No 12 Group taking over responsibility for the area. For the rest of the war it was used for teleprinter and communications work.

uk map with groups1

After the famous Yalta Conference (attended by Churchill, Stalin and Roosevelt) in February 1945, the political and geographic map of Europe was changed considerably. The Cold War had begun.

The bunker was used for civil defence meetings at this time in case of Nuclear attack, though I doubt that it would have protected the occupants completely.

The Department of Social Security buildings were built in 1948-49 and Demolished in 2005. They have been replaced by a housing estate.

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