WWII in real time


Soviet troops are flooding across Caucasus, encircling Italian & Hungarian armies & isolating Germans in Stalingrad. https://t.co/geZfMS8ZCH RealTimeWWII photo

US President on Allies' "unconditional surrender" demand: "It does not mean the destruction of the population of Germany, Italy, or Japan, but it does mean the destruction of the philosophies in those countries which are based on conquest & the subjugation of other people."

President Roosevelt, eager to keep Stalin happy, has overruled a hesitant Churchill by ruling out any negotiated peace with German & Japan.

After a week's conference in Casablanca, Allied leaders, led by President Roosevelt & Prime Minister Churchill, have announced that they demand "unconditional surrender" from the Axis powers. https://t.co/r7uufXMzKD RealTimeWWII photo

“Stalingrad is conquered!”German Ministry of Propaganda orders the destruction of never-issued posters produced six months ago, in anticipation of Axis victory at Stalingrad. https://t.co/Hc5nG2dZ0Q RealTimeWWII photo

German newspapers have started to print pessimistic news about the situation on the Eastern Front, describing Stalingrad as a “defensive battle”. Nazi columnist Karl Megerle writes: “For the first time in this war, Germany faces reverses of a certain importance."

At Allied war council in Casablanca, US President Roosevelt meets Sultan Mohammed V of Morocco, asking: “Why does Morocco, inhabited by Moroccans, belong to France?” Promises: “When we've won the war,” USA will not “further imperialistic ambitions.” https://t.co/3eWH4x3veC RealTimeWWII photo

8th Army have travelled 1400 miles from El Alamein to Tripoli in last 80 days, along rocky single coast road, carrying almost all water & fuel with them. Men carry 50lbs of food each, plus weekly ratio of 50 cigarettes & 2 packs of matches. https://t.co/QtzMy7DYIZ RealTimeWWII photo

Mussolini’s dream of a new Roman Empire stretching across North Africa is dead. Little is left but vanity monuments: like “Marble Arch” in the Libyan desert, 31-metre triumphal arch in Roman Travertine stone. https://t.co/YxbfL6bepa RealTimeWWII photo

British 8th Army are parading in Tripoli, after Italian governor surrendered the city, & the colony of Libya, to the Allies. Fascist Italy’s North African empire is dead. https://t.co/MtUEPZh5If RealTimeWWII photo

Papua is the first definitive Allied victory against the Japanese on land. Battle has raged in the territory for 6 months, with 2000 Australians & 600 dead, & 13,000 Japanese dead or taken prisoner. https://t.co/isWbz9QvWz RealTimeWWII photo

Japanese troops have finally been driven from the island of Papua; Australian & US forces have captured Sanananda, where last remnants of Japanese army, starving & disease-ridden, held a network of bunkers. https://t.co/I5b0K14Gf1 RealTimeWWII photo

Nazis are meticulous in recording numbers of victims arriving at death camps, partly for accounting purposes: SS pays German Railways a third class fare for every prisoner transported via the Holocaust trains. Children under four travel free.

British cryptanalysts do not realise significance of report: telegram refers to “special treatment”, not killing, & lists death camps only by initial: L (Lublin), B (Bełżec), S (Sobibor), T (Treblinka). Evidence of genocide of the Jews of Poland is filed in secret UK archives.

British codebreakers at Bletchley Park have deciphered an intercepted message to Himmler, head of the SS: the “Höfle telegram” contains detailed statistics on number of Jewish victims killed in 4 Nazi concentration camps last year. 1,274,166 people were murdered. https://t.co/qnJU6kyCJ6 RealTimeWWII photo

Sandhurst Road School, in London, has been hit by 500-kilo German bomb during a daylight Luftwaffe "terror raid". 38 children & 6 teachers have been killed, 60 more injured- many buried under rubble for hours while desperate parents clawed at the ruins. https://t.co/TJIHw9cCTu RealTimeWWII photo

German authorities have called in Wehrmacht troops to crush the outbreak of armed Jewish resistance in ghetto in Nazi-occupied Warsaw; in face of Jewish fighters equipped with pistols & burning bottles of gasoline, SS have fallen back.

US bombers have hit a Japanese convoy off the coast of Burma, sinking transport ship Nichimei Maru. Americans are unaware 985 Dutch prisoners are onboard, over 50 of whom die to Allied air strike. https://t.co/wg6Svejgdx RealTimeWWII photo

Japanese forces are preparing to evacuate from Guadalcanal, after repeated offensives have failed to break American positions on the island; New York Times map shows the growing Allied strength in the Pacific: https://t.co/oeAKXsQZ6i RealTimeWWII photo

In retaliation for bombing of Berlin by RAF, 118 Luftwaffe planes are raiding London for the first time in 2 years, diverting desperately needed aircraft from the Eastern Front. 23 Londoners were killed by falling shrapnel from British anti-aircraft guns.

Cold War Use

The life-span of the Regional War Rooms appears to have been quite short, though details are unknown. By the time that most of the purpose-built structures were nearing completion in 1955-6, the advent of nuclear weapons had led to an enormous change in the perception of the threat posed by the Soviet Union, and the needs of Civil Defence. The threat now was of complete breakdown of central government with the Regional War Rooms being superseded by Regional Seats of Government (RSG), fully autonomous regional command centres, hardened against nuclear attack.
Some of the purpose built Regional War Rooms were adapted as RSG’s, but this was not the case with Kenton Bar which did not have the room for expansion required for the increased number of staff. The exact date of closure of the regional war room is uncertain although it is thought that most of these facilities had been supplanted by RSG’s by around 1960.

After its use as a war room ceased it was used as a training centre for RSG and later Sub Regional Control staff in Region 1. The presence of materials related to Exercise ARCADE (ROC run exercise) confirms the continued use of the bunker. Sub regional control units were on a smaller scale than RSG’s meaning the Kenton Bunker could have been used. However; it was deemed too near the City centre target area for use as War HQ for the Newcastle Sub Region, remaining dormant with occasional staff training until about 1965, after that date it was used for storage for the government offices on site.

In 1968 it was considered for use as a temporary Sub Regional Control until a purpose built one could be built in Hexham however nothing came of this. It remained in use until the stand down of Civil Defence in 1968 after which date it was retained on care and maintenance as the County Borough War HQ. In the 1971 Home Defence Review it was still officially performing this role and in 1974 it was transferred to Tyne & Wear County council. The newly formed Newcastle District Council officially designated it as their war HQ but nothing was done to it due to the Council’s extreme left wing policy on Civil Defence and their refusal to pay rent to the Home Office. They instead used the sub basement of Sunderland Civic Centre letting Kenton Bunker remain dormant. Later in 1982 the Sub Control in Heaton was designated as Main War HQ.
In 1986 Tyne and Wear County was abolished and the newly formed Tyne and Wear Fire and Civil Defence Authority wanted to turn the filter room into a modern emergency centre, a scheme that was halted by the end of the cold war in 1989.

One Response to Cold War Use

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Our Twitter Feed

Donate

Help Preserve The Bunker