The summer months of 1940 saw World War II come to the English skies as the RAF bravely stand up to the onslaught of Hitler’s Luftwaffe. Quickly following a period of time referred to as the ‘Phoney War’, Hitler had ordered his forces to invade other European nations and there was hardly any opposition in Belgium, Netherlands or France.
Operation Dynamo had seen approximately 300,000 males of the BEF brought to security by a flotilla of ships creating the journey amongst England to Dunkirk over a number of days. So now Hitler had his sights on England. The white cliffs of Dover had been clearly visible as the German High Command peered past the English Channel from Calais.
Even so, until the skies over England were below German command, Hitler wasn’t able to authorise Operation Sealion – the invasion of United Kingdom. With America becoming reluctant to take element in the war at this stage and her Allies vanquished, Fantastic Britain would want to face the Germans on it really is personal.
Could Britain hold out till the summer time was over when the climate would thwart the Germans from crossing the Channel? British hopes was in the hands of the brave pilots of the Royal Air Force, “The Couple of” as Churchill later referred to them. It wasn’t merely British airmen in the RAF, the Commonwealth was represented with pilots from an array of colonial outposts like as South Africa and Rhodesia as nicely as Poles and even a couple of Americans.
Hitler directed his bombers over to pound UK into submission nonetheless most importantly, their fighter escorts merely had the fuel for only a couple of minutes battle prior to they would have to go back property leaving the bombers unprotected. For the really very first time, the Luftwaffe came up against solid resistance and there was to be no repeat of their fast victories on the Continent. The British airfields in the south east were taking a beating till a single night in August 1940, a German bomber got lost and dropped its bombs over London just before heading for residence. In retaliation, the RAF performed an air raid more than Berlin.
Hitler was furious and instructed the Luftwaffe to bomb London in spot of the RAF airfields. This was a crucial turning point as it presented the Royal Air Force some significantly named for relief. The Luftwaffe was unable to acquire the initiative at any point and in mid September, Hitler indefinitely postponed Operation Sealion. The danger of invasion was over and Churchill spoke of the contribution of Fighter Command in a widely recognized speech “By no means in the field of human conflict has so a lot been owed by so a lot of to so handful of”.
The quantity 1 fighter ace was Sgt Frantisek from the Czech Republic with a score of 17 kills. He flew in a Hawker Hurricane which was the accurate workhorse of Fighter Command but everyone remembers the iconic Spitfire. Sgt Frantisek was killed in October 1940.
The Battle of Britain was the initial time the Germans had skilled a military defeat in World War II.
HMS Belfast (C35) – London
HMS Belfast is a museum ship, originally a Royal Navy light cruiser, permanently moored in London on the River Thames and operated by the Imperial War Museum.
Construction of Belfast, the very first Royal Navy ship to be named after the capital city of Northern Ireland, and 1 of ten Town-class cruisers, began in December 1936. She was launched on St Patrick’s Day, 17 March 1938. Commissioned in early August 1939 shortly ahead of the outbreak of the Second Planet War, Belfast was initially element of the British naval blockade against Germany. In November 1939 Belfast struck a German mine and spent more than two years undergoing substantial repairs. Returning to action in November 1942 with enhanced firepower, radar equipment and armour, Belfast was the largest and arguably most powerful cruiser in the Royal Navy at the time. Belfast saw action escorting Arctic convoys to the Soviet Union for the duration of 1943, and in December 1943 played an essential part in the Battle of North Cape, assisting in the destruction of the German warship Scharnhorst. In June 1944 Belfast took component in Operation Overlord supporting the Normandy landings. In June 1945 Belfast was redeployed to the Far East to join the British Pacific Fleet, arriving shortly prior to the end of the Second Globe War. Belfast saw further combat action in 1950–52 for the duration of the Korean War and underwent an comprehensive modernisation among 1956 and 1959. A quantity of additional overseas commissions followed ahead of Belfast entered reserve in 1963.
By Glyn Lowe Photoworks. on 2014-07-17 19:49:48