True-life recollections from the Battle of Britain, filled with humour, courage and the realities of war
‘I was talking and laughing with a school friend in the street when suddenly there was the eerie wailing notes of the air raid siren filling the air. I can remember that our laughter stopped straight away, and I recall feeling chilled and scared. Doors were opened and people came out of their houses looking up to the sky … It was a Sunday morning on a beautiful summer’s day with blue skies and really warm sunshine. But within minutes our lives had changed, and the child in me had gone, never to return.’ Mrs Mary Earle, Kent
After the surrender of France to Germany Churchill announced that ‘the Battle of Britain is about to begin’ and on 10 July 1940 the Luftwaffe began bombing ships in the English Channel in readiness for a full air assault on the south of England. In August, German aircraft were attacking coastal airfields, moving inland to attack radar bases, further RAF airfields and aircraft factories, until finally turning their attention to London and other major cities. But Hitler had underestimated the determination of the RAF and by mid-September the Luftwaffe sustained such great losses that Britain had won the battle for our skies and the German invasion was called off.
This third instalment in the ‘We Remember’ series is filled with stories from servicemen from the air and on the ground, and the men, women and children who witnessed the extraordinary fights between British and German planes.
“Of all the books I have read this year, these are the most moving and memorable; more "people" stories than war stories, in countless voices and moods, of a richness and strength which makes fiction seem meagre”
Shaun Usher, Daily Mail