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

Authors Avatar

Arbab Bhatti

Year 10

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

The Blitz started on London but then shifted to other British cities with important factories and military bases such as Birmingham, Cardiff, Coventry, Liverpool, Portsmouth, Sheffield and Southampton. It lasted from September 1940 until April 1941. Around 40,000 ordinary British people were killed, another 46,000 injured and about one million houses destroyed or damaged. Germany’s main target was Coventry because the important aircraft factories were based there.

Portsmouth was bombed very heavily as it was an important naval base. Other ports were bombed too but this made it difficult for Britain to get any supply ships and to make it hard to control the navy.

The website bbc.co.uk/education/revision provides some details regarding why Hitler changed his mind and it was operation Sealion that the Germans planned to invade England in the summer of 1940. However the German air force or Luftwaffe failed to win the Battle of Britain, which meant that it would have been far too dangerous to attack Britain across the Channel using boats and paratroops. So the plan was postponed and abandoned in the winter of 1940 and spring of 1941 as Germany made plans to attack and invade Russia.

Liverpool, Plymouth and Birmingham were attacked. The reason for these cities to be bombed was really to dishearten the people of Britain. These made the people upset and go to the government and tell them that they demanded peace with Germany. This however did not take place and the bombing continued until May 1941. Plymouth was hit hard because it was an important naval base.

Join now!

Germany wanted to destroy some vital things that would stop Britain fighting such as roads, railways, factories, military installations, airfields and also fuel depots. To destroy civilian self-esteem in the hope that the population would become so upset that they would demand the government admit defeat immediately. To divulge to Britain just how strong Germany was, especially the Luftwaffe and so it was no good continuing to fight. All of Britain would eventually be demolished.

The Germans bombed the major cities of Britain for many reasons because firstly Hitler gave up the idea of invading Britain in September1940, ...

This is a preview of the whole essay