• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Explain why Britain was able to continue to hold out between June 1940 and the end of 1943.

Extracts from this document...


William Mace When France Surrendered in June 1940 Britain was the only European country holding out against Germany. Explain why Britain was able to continue to hold out between June 1940 and the end of 1943. There are many different factors to consider when thinking about why Britain was able to continue to hold out between June 1940 and the end of 1943. There are many key events to consider when answering this question and I shall try to approach all of them in this essay. The battle of the Atlantic started properly in June 1940 after the fall of France. This is because the collapse of Western Europe provided the Kreigsmarine with and opportunity to possibly win the war; by severing the UK's maritime communications. Hitler's strategy was to sink allied shipping using the German submarines or U-boats. Hitler put a lot of his resources into this battle because Britain is an island and therefore has to get most of its resources brought in by boat. Therefore if Germany stopped all of the convoys from getting to Britain she would have to surrender. Hitler did not put many of his resources into building battleships because he knew that Britain already had a great advantage over him in that area. ...read more.


These meant that the convoys could get through and keep on helping Britain to hold out against the Germans. Another turning point in the battle of the Atlantic was the deciphering of the enigma code machine. Decoders at Bletchley Park decoded it and deciphering it meant that Britain could now predict the moves of the German U-boats and direct the warships towards them and the convoys away from them. Another factor which helped Britain hold out was the fact that Hitler decided to attack the Russians in June 1941. This helped us greatly because it meant that we now had another ally - Russia also it meant that the German forces would no longer be concentrated on just Britain, they would now be spread out over Britain and Russia. If Russia had fallen to Hitler Britain would have been forced to surrender but luckily for us the Germans were slightly over confident. Hitler had boasted that the Russians would be defeated in just 6 weeks so they did not issue their army with winter uniforms. This proved to be a dreadful mistake, because when the German army were within 12 miles of Moscow, the harsh Russian winter struck and without any winter uniform the German advance froze to a halt. ...read more.


Even though Hitler a great military mind he made many blunders between 1940-43 which helped Britain to hold out during this period even though we were the only European country left fighting, for example when Hitler decided not to bomb the RAF targets, but to bomb the British cities instead. Not putting Germany's best equipment into North Africa meant that Germany could not fuel its army so easily. German invasion of Russia took the pressure off us and military planning and scientific skill meant that the German threat in the Atlantic was put to rest. The fact that Britain is an island made it a lot harder for the Germans to attack us, this aided us greatly especially seeing as we had great naval superiority the island was never really under threat from invasion. In conclusion there were many factors that helped Britain to hold out between the fall of France in June 1940 and the end of 1943, and it was not easy for the British but great leadership from Churchill and some dodgy decisions by Hitler helped us through the time greatly. American assistance such as the lend-lease act helped greatly also, although at the end of the war Britain was in massive debt and had a lot of work to do to build itself back up again. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Modern European History, 1789-1945 section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Modern European History, 1789-1945 essays

  1. Hitlers Germany

    supported closely by the Luftwaffe, broke through the Allied lines in the Ardenne Forest to Sedan, just where the Maginot Line ended. The public learned then for the first time that this famous line, in which the French put an almost mystical faith, covered only the Franco-German but not the Franco-Belgian borders.

  2. How did Britain Survive (June 1940-1943)?

    The Battle of Britain was not actually a single Battle as it consisted of a series of air battles. After the 1 July 1940 hundreds of German aircraft flew over from France to Britain every day. They targeted the RAF airfields and each day they faced fierce opposition from the RAF themselves.

  1. Why was Britain able to stand alone against Germany between June 1940 and December ...

    In 1941, the British managed to crack the German code "Hydra" which enabled them to read the German U-boat codes.

  2. The Battle of Britain

    Germans, although they lived a fairly comfortable lifestyle in the Czech run state, through their support behind the Nazi Party, and Hitler gave the Sudetan German Party which was in fact very Nazi orientated, instructions that demands should be made (to the Czechs)

  1. Explain how Britain was able to hold out against Germany from June 1940 to ...

    The Battle of Britain and the hoax of Operation Sealion was the most important reason as to why Britain was able to hold out against Germany, because Hitler didn't actually want to conquer Britain. Hitler knew that he needed total air superiority, which he couldn't get, and that conquering Britain would have no great advantage.

  2. Explain why Britain was able to continue to hold out against Germany between June ...

    The U-boats were one of Germany's greatest assets, and in the early years the allies suffered enormously from the carnage caused by them, this is shown by the way that U-boat destruction was given priority in January 1943. Hitler wish to create a smokescreen behind which he could carry out

  1. The battle of Britain was an important turning point in the second world war ...

    where about they were and where they were likely to go to as the observers would phone up and report to people where about they had seen the planes. Britain also had other support on their side such as the French the Americans and the Poles.

  2. Bletchley park assignment.

    Bletchley Park didn't quite influence the outcome of the Second World War that much, as I think America's grand power and Britain's determination would have come through in the end anyway but BP helped win some important battles and save many personnel from being killed by the enemy forces.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work