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

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Naomi Darling 11H

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

        The major cities of Britain were bombed because of several different reasons some of them more obvious than others but each reason would have been reason enough to commence the 'blitz' which stands for lightning. One of the reasons is that the 'Battle of Britain' failed. After France surrendered to Germany on June 22nd 1940, Hitler had enough vantage points to attack Britain. A huge attack was devised and codenamed 'Operation Sea lion', however this plan had a key flaw, which was the Royal Air Force. If 'Operation Sea lion' was put into action then the R.A.F would be able to crush the amphibious attack from the sky, so in order to avoid this Hitler ordered the German air force to attack the R.A.F and destroy their shipping ports and aeroplane manufacturing factories.                                                                                 Hitler bombed London, Coventry and other main cities to destroy factories, weapons and machinery. The first attacks were in July and the Luftwaffe started bombing airfields and factories. At first the R.A.F responded well and more enemy planes were being shot down than friendly planes. This was probably due the British pilots being able to refuel and get back up in the sky quickly whereas the German fighter pilots had a limited time and range (just 8 minutes over London), which meant that they could not escort their bombers very efficiently. The British fighter planes also had an advantage over the Germans, the 'spitfire' was one of the fastest planes of its time and the 'hurricane' had the tightest turning circle which was found to be incredibly useful in 'dog-fights'. What also helped the British fighters was the fact that they had radar and although it was still in it's primitive stages it gave the British fighters the ability to see the Germans from great distances. Despite all of this eventually the tide began to turn and Germans began to win. This was probably because the industry was manufacturing more planes than pilots. It took much longer to properly train a pilot than to make a 'spitfire', ultimately new British pilots were going in the air with only 10 hours flying experience.                                It was said that if the German attacks had lasted two more weeks then the Battle of Britain would have been lost but, fortunately, when the R.A.F was on its last knees the German attacks suddenly stopped. This was because a German bombing squad accidentally missed its target and on the way back it jettisoned its bombs (without realising it) over London. In retaliation the R.A.F bombed Berlin. Hitler, seeing how much chaos had been caused by this one attack decided to try to break the morale of the British people by bombing the cities in the night time. While bombing the British cities the German fighters could not only break the morale of the British people but they could also continue to bomb the factories and put Britain in total disorder.

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2) Describe the effects of the Blitz on everyday life in Britain.

        Over 1 million shelters had been given to families before the war started and another 1and a half million were built the next year. Families had to carry gas masks in boxes. People used the tube station for shelter during the blitz. About 80 stations sheltered 177 000 people every night.

        When it was dark lights could not be visible so bombers could not see their targets. The men who had not been recruited or had not ...

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