Swansea History web. Looking at swansea in the 1941 blitz.

Swansea during World War Two

This is a collection of my teaching and research material from the past ten years. The background to the air war is useful to explain why both sides used air attack against civilians. The colour photographs are good in conveying the extent of the damage to Swansea's centre.

The bombing and accuracy and Enigma research originally came from research into U-boats in the Bristol Channel because some of the weapons dropped on Swansea were originally designed to be fired from submarines!

'The ports at war' is a review of Swansea and the other Welsh ports as they dealt with the needs of the nation's war effort.

There is endless and often very misleading speculation about why Swansea was bombed. Luftwaffe targets in Swansea looks at the reality of the air war over Swansea.

There's some information about rationing and food on the 'Molly at the Kitchen Front' pages.

If you want a useful summary of the real outcome of the air war look at the 'Hospital Square' bomb. The story is excellent at generating discussion.

The Castle Street Bomb item is an excellent primary source and works very well with older students particularly with photographs and some visual sources.

Another very interesting primary source can be found at www.reabd.royalengineers.com which is at present running the diary of Captain James Lacey who served in the Bomb Disposal Section covering the Swansea area. https://www.army.mod.uk/royalengineers/association/reabd/diaries/jimlacey/index.htm

[Evidence: Objects Dropped From The air (1943); Evidence: The Air Attack on Swansea:The Controller's Statement to the County Borough Council][Evidence: The 1939 Air Raid Pamphlet][The Luftwaffe 1kg incendiary bomb][The Castle Street Bomb, February 1941] [The Hospital Square Bomb, 1943] [Luftwaffe photo of Swansea, 1940][Gas and chemical warfare] [Preparing a Refuge Room][Bombing Accuracy in the 1940s (or why Swansea burned)] [Evidence: The 1938 Air Raid Guide] [ The Air War over South Wales ] Douhet, Trenchard and the 'Moral Effect' of bombing ] Dr Robert Knauss and German air war doctrine ] The Spanish Civil War and the Condor Legion ] The Blitz on Britain ] Luftwaffe Air Operations Over Swansea in 1940 ] [Prior Warning:Enigma, KGr100 and Swansea Blitz] Luftwaffe Operations over Swansea  1941 to 1943 ] Growing up during the Swansea Blitz. Peter Dover-Wade's wartime experience ] [Swansea's Blitz in colour] [ Swansea Blitz (Swansea ablaze) ] Swansea Blitz (Ben Evans Store) ] Swansea Blitz (Ben Evans smoulders) ] Swansea Blitz (Further damage) ] Swansea Blitz (General damage) ] Swansea Blitz (Temple Street) ] Bomb Type ] Eye of the Eagle. The Luftwaffe aerial photographs of Swansea ] Luftwaffe Targets in Swansea ]

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The air war over South Wales:

Growing up in Swansea during the blitz:

Eye of the Eagle:

Civil Defence:

The colour of war: Swansea's blitz damage:

Preparing for the worst:

Bombing Swansea:

The air raids in detail. A complete list of the air attacks on Swansea:

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Recommended Reading:

The Luftwaffe: 1933-45 Strategy for Defeat by Williamson Murray

You can obtain a copy of this book by using our association with  In Association with Amazon.co.uk

Just click on the book title or cover picture!

If you want to understand the European air war of WW2 then this is the book for you. Written in an emphatically clear style and backed up by superb referencing, this book cuts away all of the misleading propaganda that has marked much British work about the air war. I first came across this book as a reference in an American Air Force journal and there lies the clue to the clarity of this work, it wasn't written as sentimental history it was meant to be a manual of what not to do if you find yourself in a crucial management position. The author examines the creation of the Luftwaffe in fine detail and explains the origins of the various strategies used against the Allies during the course of the war. If you want to understand what happened and why, then this book will tell you.

The book remains my constant companion whilst researching the air war over South Wales. The author's scholarly insights into the workings of the German Luftwaffe have proved priceless in guiding my own research. You will find this book far clearer and easier to read than many books about the Battle of Britain which look so much prettier and cost so much more. (Nigel Robins)




Recommended Reading:

Horrible Histories: The Blitzed Brits 

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Just click on the book title or cover picture!

For younger children this book just can't be beat. The content is always accurate and quite sensitive. Its an excellent way of introducing the history of the Home Front to youngsters for the first time. There are even little quizzes at the ends of the chapters to check for learning. Very handy in class! (Nigel Robins)

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