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

Why were the major cities of Britain bombed by the Germans in 1940 - 1941?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Why were the major cities of Britain bombed by the Germans in 1940 - 1941? Immediately after the defeat of France in the June of 1940, Adolf Hitler gave his generals the orders to organise the invasion of Britain. This plan was code-named Operation Sealion and its objective was to land 160,000 German fighters along a forty mile stretch of south-east England's coast. It was only a few weeks before a large fleet of vessels was ready for attack. Among them 2000 barges lay waiting for the go ahead in German, Belgian and French harbours. As Hitler's generals were concerned about the damage the R.A.F could inflict upon their armada the invasion was postponed until the British air force had been annihilated. On 12th August the mass bomber attacks on radar stations, aircraft factories and fighter airfields began; This attack was followed by daily raids on Britain, this became the beginning of the Battle of Britain. Although these plans were drawn up Hitler was never very keen on them, his lack of enthusiasm caused their abandonment on October the 12th 1940. Instead of invasion Hitler switched his efforts to pounding Britain into submission with gruesome sustained nightly bombing campaign. ...read more.

Middle

They consisted of corrugated iron covered with earth deep in the ground. They were usually cold and damp but they did provide a little private shelter for those who had them. They were also quite effective as the picture shows. This particular shelter remained intact after taking the full force of a bomb in London, 20th March 1941. The Morrison shelter was also fairly popular. This was an iron cage that doubled as a table but was designed to protect the family as their house collapsed around them. The theory was they would crawl out of the rubble unhurt. However if they were trapped and the house was on fire they would die, powerless to save themselves. Larger civic shelters were constructed of brick and concrete in British towns but the simple construction plans of the government often led to sand and lime being used instead of concrete. This led to the occupants seeking refuge dying as a result of their faulty shelter. The defence of the cities is believed to have been the anti-aircraft guns (which stopped firing when the British Fighter Command launched their aircraft) ...read more.

Conclusion

Reports often used to concentrate on a particular family's story, so as to bring hope to other readers. They often twisted the truth to keep morale high. In cases of individual disasters, newspapers were often made to report or show photographs of the incident only a few days later, and some times had to wait even longer. This occurred with the bombing of Balham tube station, where several hundred people drowned because of a severed water pipe. Censorship of photographs was very common during the blitz. Photographs were not always censored because they showed death and disasters of the worst kind, but also because they portrayed the misery and angst of civilians, and depicted the widening gap between the ways of life of the working classes in comparison. However all the censorship could not hide the damage nor repair it and it could not erase the images of burning and dismembered corpses in the minds of the people. Although the people stoically stood shoulder-to-shoulder against the onslaught, what they suffered was nothing compared to what the Germans were going to suffer. As Sir Arthur (bomber) Harris said when he had the new generation of long-range heavy bombers at his disposal "They have sown the wind, now they will reap the whirlwind". ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Britain 1905-1951 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 GCSE Britain 1905-1951 essays

  1. Why did the British Government decide to evacuate children from Britains major cities in ...

    The image below is a primary resource showing the reasons why parents should evacuate their children which was given to the British public. This is a form of propaganda as, although it does not directly tell the parents to evacuate their children (or talk of children at all), it scares mothers into doing so.

  2. Battle Of Britain - The Popular Myth

    David Thompson uses the influence over people to make sure they never forget the brave actions of the RAF, who were to lead Britain to victory and that the Battle of Britain to some extent was a success due to poor tactical miscalculations and ignorance by the enemy.

  1. Why were the major cities of Britain bombed by the Germans in 1940 - ...

    The government was very keen to limit any reports on events during any conflict. This meant that no reporters were allowed in any area affected by the raids, so the government could control the news almost entirely and did so to project a very positive image of what was going on.

  2. Why were major cities of Britain bombed by the Germans in 1940-41?

    This is probably a piece of propaganda used by the government because it is a posed photograph of a large group of people looking happy. Propaganda like this was not banned because they showed people pulling together. If people saw images like this daily then they would be encouraged to

  1. Why were the major cities of Britain bombed by the Germans in 1940-41?

    Obviously houses could not be protected from bombs, so even though the owners were free, they could guarantee that the following morning they would have homes to go back to. People who lost their homes were offered temporary accommodation, most people would be grateful for it, it was not luxurious,

  2. Britain In theAge of Total War, 1939-1945 - why were the major cities of ...

    They were ordered to cover their windows with heavy blackout material and other rules stated that: * Street lights were to be masked as to

  1. Why were the major cities of Britain bombed by the Germanys in 1940 - ...

    It was Hitler biggest air raid yet but with the fighters in the air London held the line. Hitler lost 59 planes on that attack, which meant he could not keep up daylight bombing with those kinds of losses. So the night time bombing raids began again.

  2. The Blitz - Why were the major cities of Britain bombed in 1940-1941?

    43,000 people died in the Blitz and 1 in every 6 houses was damaged. People had to do many more jobs and were put under much harder strain during the Blitz. Wardens, workers, policemen and firemen, people who would work (probably in the munitions industry)

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