Home Intro People Events Equipment Places Maps Books Photos Videos Other Reference FAQ About

World War II Database

V-1 file photo [28178]

Vergeltungswaffe 1 Missile

Country of OriginGermany
Diameter5,370.000 mm
Length8.320 m
Weight2150.000 kg
Range250.000 km
MachineryArgus As 109-014 Pulsejet
Explosive Charge850kg Amatol-39


ww2dbaseThe Germans started to research the possibilities of pilotless bombs soon after the end of the First War in order to evade the terms of the Treaty of Versailles which had forbade any development of certain internal combustion engines. By the time of the start of the second war, German scientists had an advanced concept of a jet or reaction propulsion unit to power an aircraft or pilotless missile. So research started to develop a missile that would be small and light but capable of carrying up to 1,000 kilograms of high explosive and have the fuel and guidance systems to reach a target across the English Channel. After the Battle of Britain had gone badly for the Germans the research and development of such a weapon was speeded up.

The Luftwaffe experimental station at Peenemünde in Germany was an ideal place for this research; being on an island in the Baltic gave the base security and a large expanse of sea that was free of enemy vessels. Other sites carried out research, developement and manufacture of fuels, gyroscopic systems and other parts. Fritz Gosslau, a scientist with the Argus Motor Company was convinced that the basic idea of the missile was sound and proceeded to simplify the design. As an aircraft engine manufacturer, Argus sought the assistance Heinkel in the design of the fuselage and in January 1942, Robert Lusser, Heinkel's chief designer took up a position with the Fieseler aircraft company. Lusser then decided to develop a single engine, jet-propelled flying bomb.

On November 8, 1943, a British photographic reconnaissance flight over the Peenemünde site provided photographs of a launching ramp with what looked like a small aircraft in place upon it. The British intelligence officials noticed a similarity with sites under construction in the Pas de Calais region of France and reports began to come in of the Germans producing a new weapon but by this time testing over the Baltic and mass production of the V-1 flying bomb was well under way and the sites that the Allies had discovered would prove difficult to destroy and were quickly repaired.

The weapon, Vergeltungswaffe 1 ("Vengeance Weapon 1"), or V-1 for short, was a simple little aircraft made almost completely from mild steel welded together. Powered by a reaction jet motor of what by today's standards was an extremely primitive design. It was designed to be mass produced cheaply in different areas and then to be assembled at or near the launch site. A network of road and rail connections between the manufacturing sites and the launch ramps was already being built as the weapon was undergoing trials.

The structure of the bomb was essentially a plain cylinder with domed tends and with parallel edged wings attached, with a jet unit fixed high at the tail supported on the body of the bomb and at the tail. Upon launch this aircraft would be subjected to 10g (gravitational force) and this was taken into consideration in all aspects of manufacture. A fuel tank held 150 gallons and directly in front of this was the warhead attached by bolts and made from 2-millimeter steel and holding between 850 and 1,000 kilograms of Amatol 39 and later Trialen thus the weapon was essentially a blast bomb as would be seen by the devastating amount of damage caused in built up areas of London later.

In front of the warhead was a duralumin fairing holding the compass free from magnetic fields. Two spherical air bottles bound with piano wire were in a compartment behind the fuel tank. These provided the compressed air to power the spinning gyroscopes in the automatic pilot, operating the pneumatic servos of the rudder and for forcing the fuel up to the motor; the air was compressed to 150 atmospheres. The pulse jet engine was of simple yet reliable design, firing at 45 times per second it gave the V-1 its particular distinctive sound.

The bomb was designed to be launched from a ground based ramp, the missile lowered onto a metal trolley that would be propelled forward as soon as the engine was firing fully. When on the trolley, the tank was filled with fuel and the air bottles pressurised, then the magnetic compass would be set on the calculated course with height and range settings made. An external compressed air supply would be used to fire up the engine which then became a giant blow pipe. Once this point was reached nothing could be done to alter its course, the bomb could only fly once. The wing span was 17.6 feet and a central spar went from wing tip to wing tip, the construction of the wings gave it huge strength and with all plated joints being butted, the flush surfaces gave good lift.

At the very front of the missile was a freely rotating propeller which rotated a counter which would, at a certain pre-set point arm the bomb, cut the fuel to the engine and fire two detonators that forced down spoilers on the tail plane and the rudder became locked. This succession of actions put the bomb into a dive. Before unexploded V-1 flying bombs were examined it was presumed that they had run out of fuel and dived due to that. When the bomb hit the ground the warhead was detonated by one of three fuses in the nose, these covered the possibilities of the bomb gliding rather than diving, something that frequently happened.

The automatic pilot was three air driven gyros, a master with two secondary. To combat any wandering after time in the air the magnetic compass in the nose was connected electrically to the gyro. Height was set by a dial with settings from 2,000 to 10,000 feet, but few bombs were found to be flying above 5,000 feet. Electrical supply was provided by 42 dry cells of 1.5 volts each coupled in two parallel blocks giving 30 volts.

Göran Jansson, "Vergeltungswaffen Retaliation Weapons" data base
Smithsonian Institution Archives

Last Major Revision: Nov 2018

Vergeltungswaffe 1 Missile Interactive Map


British Spitfire fighter attempting to topple a German V-1 flying bomb with its wing tip, date unknownV-1 rocket flew across England, circa 1944
See all 8 photographs of Vergeltungswaffe 1 Missile

Vergeltungswaffe 1 Timeline

26 May 1943 At Peenemünde, Germany, before Hermann Göring, Erhard Milch, and other top German leaders, an A-4 rocket and a flying bomb were tested. The A-4 rocket flew perfectly, while the flying bomb crashed only after a mile or two of flight.
7 Sep 1943 RAF aircraft bombed V-1 flying bomb launch sites on the French coast.
24 Dec 1943 The USAAF 306th Bomb Group flying from RAF Thurleigh launched 26 bombers as part of a 670-bomber raid, the largest 8th Air Force bombing raid to date. Targets were rocket launching sites along the French coast.
30 Dec 1943 10 Lancaster bombers of 617 Squadron RAF and 6 Mosquito aircraft attacked a German V-1 flying bomb launch site but failed to destroy it.
14 Jan 1944 The USAAF 306th Bomb Group flying from RAF Thurleigh launched a raid against rocket launching sites in the Pas-de-Calais region of France.
21 Jan 1944 The USAAF 306th Bomb Group flying from RAF Thurleigh launched a raid against rocket launching sites in the Pas-de-Calais region of France but could drop no bombs due to weather.
12 Mar 1944 An errant V-1 flying bomb landed in Swedish territory.
26 Mar 1944 The USAAF 306th Bomb Group flying from RAF Thurleigh launched a raid against rocket launching sites in the Pas-de-Calais region of France.
20 Apr 1944 The USAAF 306th Bomb Group flying from RAF Thurleigh launched a raid against rocket launching sites in the Pas-de-Calais region of France.
13 Jun 1944 The first ten V-1 flying bombs were launched from France between 0330 and 1400 hours. Two blew up shortly after take off, two crashed into the English Channel, two landed and exploded in rural areas and another in a garden destroying the house and greenhouses. Only one reached the target, London, England, United Kingdom. It exploded at Bethnal Green on the railway bridge across Grove Road, killing six people, the first of 6,200 such fatalities that would be caused in the coming months.
16 Jun 1944 For two days after the first V-1 flying bomb exploded in London, none were fired, leading the defence and intelligence committees in the UK to believe that those of the 13 August 1944 had been rangefinders and experiments. To-day this idea was shattered by 224 being fired from their launch sites across the British Channel. The Germans did still have guidance and reliability problems but over twenty-two exploded in South London. Due to the nature of the bomb gliding down the blast damage was greater than bombs dropped at altitude by bombers. In Mayplace Avenue, Crayford, nine people were killed and many seriously injured and in Beckenham seven bombs hit within a couple of hours killing over ten, the worst incident at Maple Grove. In all the Borough had over 200 houses badly damaged, together with gas mains and electricity supplies cut. Other V-1 flying bombs exploded throughout the south-eastern counties. Some of the Germans called it "Day of Vengeance".
18 Jun 1944 A V-1 flying bomb struck the Guards Chapel across from Buckingham Palace in London, England, United Kingdom during worship services, killing 119.
19 Jun 1944 The USAAF 306th Bomb Group flying from RAF Thurleigh launched a raid against rocket launching sites in the Pas-de-Calais region of France but returned without bombing due to weather.
29 Jun 1944 The borough of Penge in south-east London, England, United Kingdom received four V-1 flying bombs or "Divers" as they were now being called by the military. The first three explosions did considerable damage to houses but caused no casualties, the fourth however, fell behind an anti-aircraft gun site and killed a soldier and destroyed the Nissen huts where Z rockets were going to be stored. The afternoon and evening saw over seven explosions causing loss of life in the south London area. The Folkestone and Hythe anti-aircraft batteries brought down eight into the sea during the day.
30 Jun 1944 Weald House in Edenbridge, Kent, England, United Kingdom was being used by London County Council as a home for evacuated mothers and babies. In the early morning a V-1 was deflected by a tree and directly hit the house; twenty-two babies were killed outright or died in hospital, eight staff also died. The mothers at the rear of the building survived.
1 Jul 1944 V-1 flying bombs destroyed 60 houses and killed three residents in Brixton, south London, England, United Kingdom. Another 10 fatalities were caused during the morning in Gibbs Square, Upper Norwood and Lunham Road, Gypsy Hill, both also in London. In the afternoon the Colindale Hospital in Hendon was hit resulting in 5 airmen, 4 WAAFs and a civilian nurse being killed. The death toll rose in the afternoon with hits on the Goat public house, Bermondsey (18 killed) and over 250 seriously injured when the Corporation Refuse Destructor chimney was brought down on houses. A total of 61 people in South London perished during the day.
2 Jul 1944 The V-1 flying bomb assault on London, England and the south-eastern counties of the United Kingdom continued during the early hours with 30 deaths and much damaged property. The bombs continued to arrive throughout the morning, one bomb hitting a US Army camp. Sergeant Ed Bearefoot was trapped for over 3 days beneath the rubble, his two friends who had been in the room with him died shortly after the blast. Allied fighter aircraft were now getting to know how to dive onto the V-1 flying bombs in order to shoot them down. The speed of the bomb was faster than all but the latest Spitfire and Tempest fighters and the pilots had to dive from height in order to gain speed and get their shots in. New aircraft were being brought to the area and many anti-aircraft guns were taken to the coastal areas where the bombs passed overhead.
2 Jul 1944 The USAAF 306th Bomb Group flying from RAF Thurleigh launched a raid against rocket launching sites in the Pas-de-Calais region of France.
4 Jul 1944 American servicemen were again killed, and six women of US Army Women's Army Corps were wounded, by a V-1 flying bomb hitting their accommodation in Bexley, south-east London, England, United Kingdom.
5 Jul 1944 22 Heinkel bombers of German III/KG3 flew sorties during the night and launched V-1 flying bombs. The bomb all fell in the south London area in Britain, causing considerable damage to property and killing over fifteen residents. The British were seeing that more damage was caused by these flying bombs than by the bombs dropped by bombers. This was due to the fact that they often glided down in shallow dives and blew up on the ground, the blast of 1,870 pounds of Amatol or Trialen often destroyed over 20 houses and took the roofs off many more.
6 Jul 1944 The Heinkel aircraft of German III/KG3 launched 8 V-1 flying bombs into England, United Kingdom during the night. This squadron lost two planes during take off from their base at Rosi?res, France when they collided on the runway, one crew member was killed. 418 Squadron RAF, flying Mosquito VI aircraft, brought down 12 flying bombs most of them over the cliffs of Beachy Head on the East Sussex coast, while further south after dark, 605 Squadron, flying the Mosquito VI night fighters, shot down 7. Night fighter pilots asked that the aircraft be fitted with dark glass visors as the explosion of the V-1 bomb in the air in front of the attacking aircraft was temporally blinding the pilot and navigator.
6 Jul 1944 The USAAF 306th Bomb Group flying from RAF Thurleigh launched a raid against rocket launching sites in the Pas-de-Calais region of France but returned without bombing due to inability to positively identify the target. This was also the day that RAF Thurleigh received a visit from British royalty. HM King George VI, HM Queen Elizabeth, HRH Princess Elizabeth, and courtiers arrived accompanied by Eighth Air Force Commander General Jimmy Doolittle. This was Princess Elizabeth’s first visit to an American air base in Britain and she christened bomber ‘Rose of York’ named in her honor.
7 Jul 1944 German III/KG3 mounted a V-1 flying bomb assault on England, United Kingdom from their base in Rosières, France. Two of the Heinkel He.111 bombers collided on the runway during take off resulting in the death of one of the air crew. The night fighter Mosquito aircraft of 418 Squadron (RCAF) shot down 13 of the bombs mostly over the English Channel. One of the bombs that got through landed in Southampton, causing little damage. No. 91 Squadron RAF flying from their base at RAF Deanland shot down 12 flying bombs whilst No. 3 Squadron's Tempest V fighters brought down another.
8 Jul 1944 A V-1 bomb landed and exploded on Greenwich Police Station in London, England, United Kingdom; several people were trapped in the wreckage of the West London station, no deaths occurred. However, an early arriving bomb killed 6 people in Oakdale Road, Streatham, south west London. Polish pilot, Flying Officer Tadeusz Karnkowski, 316 (Polish) Squadron, after shooting down two V-1 bombs tried to tip over a third with his wing tips, the manoeuvre was successful but also damaged his Spitfire fighter and he was forced to crash land on the runway at RAF West Malling.
9 Jul 1944 The South Metropolitan Gas Company's gasholder in Kennington, south-east London, England, United Kingdom received a direct hit from a V-1 flying bomb causing a huge explosion and a large amount of damage to local houses.
10 Jul 1944 30 sorties were made by the Heinkel bombers of III/KG3 carrying V-1 flying bombs against Britain. A British naval anti-aircraft battery brought down one of the aircraft. The falling V-1 bombs caused deaths in the southern London boroughs of Battersea and Clapham where six people were killed in the Underground Station. The Royal navy Fleet Air Arm Pilot Sub Lieutenant D. P. Davies, whilst returning from an anti-shipping patrol in his Avenger Mk. 1 aircraft, saw a V-1 bomb and his TAG L/Airman Fred Shirmer brought it down at 700 yards, only firing 20 rounds; Shirmer received a mention in dispatches.
11 Jul 1944 London, England, United Kingdom received many V-1 bombs and over 38 deaths were reported. The worst incident, killing 14, was at Annerley Road in Crystal Palace, south-east London. At Public House, The Paxon's Arms was hit close by in Clapham, 11 people in the pub were killed. At Deptford, south-east London, 11 dock workers were killed, with cranes and workshops destroyed.
12 Jul 1944 A V-1 bomb hit "Beechmont House" in Sevenoaks, Kent in southern England, United Kingdom. The house was used as a billet for ATS girls that maintained army vehicles, fortunately most of the girls had left for work, nevertheless two girls were killed and 44 injured. The borough of Beckenham received two fatal hits from the flying bombs; the borough would soon become one of the hardest hit areas in South London.
13 Jul 1944 In the United Kingdom, General Frederick Pile and Air Marshal Roderic Hill held a meeting to discuss the best way for the British Royal Air Force and the anti-aircraft batteries to deal with incoming V-1 bombs. Two distinct areas for fighters were created, one over the sea in front of the guns and the other inland behind them; these zones were created partially because the gun batteries along the coast were to be supplied with the secret radio proximity fuzed shells that would pose an equal threat to nearby friendly aircraft as to the V-1s. There were many fatal V-1 bomb impacts over south London during the day; the worse was when the Tiger's Head Inn in Lewisham was hit killing 16 and injuring 40. Five members of a family were killed in the Park Hotel in Bromley, they were due to be evacuated that afternoon.
14 Jul 1944 Heinkel aircraft of III/KG3 flew 23 sorties to launch V-1 bombs against Southampton, England, United Kingdom during the night. Most missed the City or were shot down but night fighters. However, one came down on Newcomen Road in Portsmouth killing 15 and another killed all members of a family that had fled London and were staying with friends in the small village of Goodworth Clatford.
15 Jul 1944 7 people were killed outside London Bridge railway station in London, England, United Kingdom by a V-1 bomb that also demolished a block of apartments. First Lieutenant Donald M. Raine of 412th Fighter Squadron of USAAF 373rd Fighter Group, flying his P-47 fighter, brought down the first of his squadron's V-1 bombs over the village of Kingsnorth in Kent. Pilots were becoming nervous about the bombs they shot down hitting houses and civilians. The Air Ministry put the defence of London as a priority.
16 Jul 1944 Three V-1 flying bombs impacted in quick succession in Brixton, London, England, United Kingdom, hitting Ramsey Road (5 killed), Brixton Road (2 killed) and at Lubbock Street in nearby Battersea (16 killed). The Church of St John in Bermondsey was hit; this church had been badly damaged during the Blitz of 1940 and repairs had been completed. The church was used as an emergency aid station; two workers were killed when the roof collapsed.
17 Jul 1944 A major incident was declared when at 0530 hours a V-1 bomb blew up in Suffield Road, Walworth, south-east London, England, United Kingdom; 17 residents were killed, 40 houses demolished and 150 damaged by the blast. Many houses were damaged beyond repair to the south west in Brixton when another V-1 bomb landed in the middle of Brassey Square. The new defence system announced earlier on in the week came into effect at dawn, it was welcomed by the fight pilots who had been troubled by friendly fire whilst diving on the bombs. 41 Squadron at RAF Lympne lost two of its pilots in a collision above the airfield.
18 Jul 1944 Heinkel aircraft of III/KG3 flew 14 sorties to launch V-1 flying bombs against London, England, United Kingdom; all aircraft returned safely. Meanwhile, another German squadron was working up to operational level at Gilze-Rijen. The borough of Beckenham in London was the scene of the worst bomb incident of the day when the bus station was hit; 18 were killed including 2 soldiers, the petrol supply tanks at the depot exploded adding to more damage and injuries to firemen.
19 Jul 1944 Over 45 V-1 flying bombs were shot down by fighters from the RAF squadrons situated in the Counties of Kent and Sussex in Britain, whilst more were shot down into the sea by coastal anti-aircraft batteries. Two Polish Squadrons (306 and 315) accounted for 14 of them, with Flight Sergeant J. Zaworski PAF (306 Squadron) scoring 3 kills within 2 patrols. However more damage was caused by bombs getting through the defences; Wandsworth in south west London and Peckham in the south east had bombs causing fatalities and over 50 houses were condemned after damage assessment.
20 Jul 1944 A farmer was surprised when a V-1 bomb impacted in woodland by his house in Gipping, Suffolk, England, United Kingdom. It was thought that the automatic pilot system had failed to make the bomb go so far off course.
21 Jul 1944 7 people were killed at 0654 hours when a V-1 flying bomb struck Blenheim Close, Penge, south-east London, England, United Kingdom; over 150 houses were badly damaged. Injured staff at the ice cream factory in Lambeth meant that the factory was unable to supply ice to hospitals. Another Mosquito aircraft was lost when 248 Squadron intercepted enemy aircraft whilst hunting V-1 flying bombs, three Dornier bombers were shot down but the aircraft of Flight Sergeant Walter Scott and his observer Flight Sergeant John Blackburn was hit by return fire and crashed into the sea.
22 Jul 1944 Pilot Officer Ken Foskett became a local hero after bringing down a V-1 flying bomb onto the railway lines near Ashford in Kent, England, United Kingdom. Seeing a train approaching the damaged track at speed, Fosket made low passes over the locomotive, lowering his wheels and dipping his wings. The engineers in the engine got the message and stopped the train.
23 Jul 1944 Tempest V fighters of No. 3 Squadron RAF based at RAF Newchurch in Kent, England, United Kingdom destroyed 13 V-1 flying bombs over the south eastern counties. At the same time further to the south the two Polish Squadrons were busy accounting for 8 more. One, shot down by Kasimierz Siwek PAF (315 Squadron) landed on the perimeter of RAF Kingsnorth, a prototype Advanced Landing Ground, narrowly missing aircraft parked there.
24 Jul 1944 In the early morning five aircraft-launched German V-1 flying bombs impacted on London, England, United Kingdom, the most serious being in Canterbury Terrace in the borough of Kilburn at 0440 hours, killing 16 residents. III KG/3 had launched 11 in total; the other six blew up in the counties of Essex and Hertfordshire. The Tempest V fighters of the Fighter Interception Unit (FIU) of the RAF brought down seven bombs after dark two of which fell onto the military camp at Offham in Mereworth Woods and Gravelly Bottom; No service personnel were hurt but damage to vehicles and offices was severe.
25 Jul 1944 Sorties were flown by aircraft of III KG/3 again during the night, in all 18 aircraft took off to launch V-1 flying bombs on England, United Kingdom. One aircraft, Heinkel He 111 5K+GT of 9 Staffel flown by Unteroffizier Günter Rohne, hit a high communication mast near Eindhoven in the Netherlands and blew up; there were no survivors. London and the counties of Hertfordshire and Essex were again hit but only light casualties were reported. 96 Squadron RAF lost a Mosquito XIII aircraft and the crew when the aircraft failed to return to RAF Ford. It was thought that the plane was hit by friendly fire when returning from the anti-diver patrol.
27 Jul 1944 24 people were killed when a V-1 flying bomb fell onto Church Road in Beckenham, London, England, United Kingdom; it impacted by the road and graveyard by the St George's Church and caused major damage and unearthing graves. Others fell in Norwood elsewhere in London, killing 6 and bringing down houses. A stray flying bomb impacted near the town of Mosstofta in Sweden, causing little damage and no casualties. It was unclear where this bomb was launched from; it could have been from a training flight by III KG/3 or from the research area at Peenemünde, Germany.
28 Jul 1944 One of the worst V-1 flying bomb incidents happened at 0935 hours when a bomb hit the crowded shopping centre in Lewisham, London, England, United Kingdom. It landed on the roof of a street level shelter outside a Marks & Spencer department store. It caused major damage to the store and the Woolworths next to it. Many were killed in the Woolworth's basement restaurant area and passing buses were ripped apart. 51 people were killed instantly and others in hospital later. The blast zone of this bomb stretched for 600 yards in all directions. The day was made worse when another 45 were killed in Kensington High Street in central London.
29 Jul 1944 In south London, England, United Kingdom, two surface air raid shelters were partly destroyed when a V-1 flying bomb impacted at the junction of Hollyoak and Dante Roads in Elephant and Castle; twenty houses were rendered uninhabitable. There were no casualties with this bomb, however another exploded nearby killing five and damaging almost 200 houses. Further south a V-1 flying bomb crashed and blew up near the town of Sevenoaks in western Kent after being shot down by a fighter, as often happened in the countryside, after the explosion schoolboys took parts for souvenirs.
30 Jul 1944 In southern England, United Kingdom, the North Kent village of Swanscombe had a V-1 flying bomb explode in Taunton Road. It killed 11 and badly wounded 22 and the blast resulted in the complete destruction of 60 cottages making 160 people homeless. Flight Sergeant Gedfrey Tate of 1 Squadron was lost when his Spitfire fighter LFIXh crashed into the sea after he went into a dive chasing a V-1 flying bomb.
31 Jul 1944 91 Squadron RAF lost a veteran pilot when Flying Officer Paddy Schade's Spitfire XIV fighter was hit by a Tempest fighter flown by Flight Sergeant Archie Wilson RNZAF of 486 Squadron when Wilson emerged from cloud whilst chasing a V-1 flying bomb. The wing of the Tempest fighter tore off the Spitfire fighter's cockpit; both pilots were killed. Flight Sergeant Stan Rudowski of 306 Squadron (Polish) RAF was vectored onto a V-1 flying bomb approaching the town of Rye, Kent in southern England, United Kingdom, two miles west of the coastal town he attacked from below, the flying bomb slowed, looped and exploded in the sea just off the beach.
2 Aug 1944 In France, III/KG 100 sent out 9 Do 217M aircraft with V-1 flying bombs attached to attack railways and roads around Pontaubault in Normandie in an attempt to stall the Allied break out of the area. Mosquito fighter from 488 Squadron (RNZAF) intercepted the Germans, shooting down 2 before they had launched their bombs. The other Dornier bombers aborted the mission.
2 Aug 1944 A V-1 flying bomb caused the deaths of 12 residents of Pendle Road in the borough of Streatham, South-west London, at 0510 hours, a second bomb impacted on Gypsy Road in Upper Norwood, killing 3, one of whom was an elderly lady awaiting evacuation from the area.
3 Aug 1944 RAF Hendon north of London, England, United Kingdom was hit by a V-1 flying bomb in the early hours; it demolished a barrack block and 5 accommodation huts where 5 airmen were killed and over 25 wounded. The area around Maidstone in Kent in southern England received V-1 flying bombs throughout the morning, one of them fell after snagging the wires of a barrage balloon; it killed 5 workmen on the railway and another 7 had to be hospitalized. First Lieutenant Jack Robinson USAAF of 416th Fighter-Bomber Group flying a P-47 aircraft shot down a V-1 flying bomb; this episode was watched by civilians on the ground near Ashford, Kent who cheered as the bomb veered away and exploded in woodland.
4 Aug 1944 During the early hours of the morning the Tempest aircraft of the Fighter Interception Unit based at RAF Manson in Kent, England, United Kingdom brought down 11 V-1 flying bombs. The bombs all fell in the area around East Sutton and Thurnham. A church was badly damaged, and houses lost their roof tiles but only 8 people were treated for injury from the explosions.
5 Aug 1944 A V-1 flying bomb brought down by a Tempest aircraft landed in Malling Road, Snodland in north Kent, England, United Kingdom; the explosion brought down 10 houses in the village and killed 12 people in them, a further 16 were badly injured; two doctors, both badly injured whose surgery facility was within one of the houses, carried on treating the casualties. Another serious incident happened in East Dulwich in south-east London when the Co-Operative department store in Lordship Lane was hit; 23 people died and many injured; a Salvation Army headquarters was damaged where 29 people were seriously injured when the roof fell in.
6 Aug 1944 Anti-aircraft batteries along the southern British coast were in action throughout the day, bringing down V-1 flying bombs; the beaches along the coast at Folkestone and Hythe, Kent, England, United Kingdom were becoming littered with wreckage from the bombs. The fighter squadrons were busy too with the Polish 316 squadron bringing down 9, mostly behind the coastal anti-aircraft guns near Hastings, Sussex. Flight Sergeant Don MacKerras RAAF was killed when his Tempest V fighter spun into the ground whilst he was on patrol; he had attempted to tip a flying bomb over with his wing tip but collided with the missile, losing his wing.
6 Aug 1944 A V-1 flying bomb caused massive damage when it exploded in Carrington Road in Dartford, London, England, United Kingdom; 20 homes were wrecked and another 700 houses needed repair; ten people died and 20 hospitalized. Balloons brought down four flying bombs around the town of Sevenoaks in Kent, England; the success was a testament to the skill of the balloon crews in placing them at the correct height and in areas that did not threaten dwellings if the bombs were brought down.
7 Aug 1944 A V-1 flying bomb blew up in Underhill Road, East Dulwich in south east London, England, United Kingdom, 4 residents were killed. Three V-1 bombs, brought down by fighters, crashed into the outskirts of Ashford, Kent, England causing damage and one death. The fighter pilots were now taking efforts to avoid their targets impacting on built up areas but the problem remained of the bombs flying erratically once hit. 316 Squadron (Polish) brought down 8 flying bombs, following on from the 9 kills made the previous day. Warrant Officer Czeslaw Bartlomiejczyk shot down four in the space of five minutes when he got behind the V-1 flying bombs flying in single file over the English Channel in his Mustang III fighter. Flight Officer Henry "Dixie" Dean flying the new RAF jet fighter, the Gloster Meteor, brought down a V-1 flying bomb over the village of Rorbertsbridge, east Sussex. 616 squadron now had a dozen of the jet fighters and 33 pilots training with them.
8 Aug 1944 He 111 aircraft flying from their base in Rozières in France flew 23 sorties during the night of 7-8 Aug 1944. One of the Heinkel bombers was shot down by Flight Officer John Smith (604 Squadron); the bomber crashed near Achmer, Lower Saxony, Germany attempting to reach base; Smith also brought down a Do 217 bomber during the patrol over the channel. A V-1 flying bomb launched by another He 111 bomber hit a hostel for agricultural workers near Benenden, Kent, England, United Kingdom, killing four and injuring 33. The balloons around Dartford brought down two flying bombs and another, shot down by a fighter over Bidborough, near Tonbridge Wells in Kent, was the first to be found to be carrying 24 1-kilogram incendiary bombs. Flight Lieutenant "Togs" Mellersh of FIU (fighter interception Unit) shot down four flying bombs on his single night patrol.
9 Aug 1944 A V-1 flying bomb exploded in the air above the town of Lamberhurst, Kent, England, United Kingdom after being shot at by a fighter, the bomb scattered 1-kilogram incendiary bombs. 91 squadron was officially taken off anti-V-1 operations and moved to RAF Hawkinge in Kent to re-equip with Spitfire LFIX fighters. The squadron had accounted for 184 of the bombs, and 2 more would be added whilst they trained in their new aircraft. The squadron's Spitfire XIV fighters were handed to 402 Squadron (RCAF) who commenced anti-V-1 operations three days later.
12 Aug 1944 No. 402 Squadron RCAF, flying Spitfire XIV fighters, began anti-V-1 flying bomb operations in Britain. The squadron was based at RAF Hawkinge in Kent, England, United Kingdom.
13 Aug 1944 There were 19 V-1 flying bombs launched against Britain by Heinkel aircraft from III/KG3 during the night, only half of the number launched by air the previous evening. The Gruppe were having to evacuate their base at Rozières, Picardy, France, as the Allied advance was approaching the area, they would fly to Venlo in the Netherlands but would not launch any further bombs for a week. Squadron 274 lost a pilot, Flight Sergeant Royston Ryman flew into a hilltop at Elham, Kent, whilst conducting an anti-Diver patrol. A further seventeen V-1 flying bombs were shot down by anti-aircraft fire, one of which fell and exploded near to Lydden Spout coastal battery at Dover, Kent where a serviceman was badly wounded and four others slightly injured.
14 Aug 1944 The US 127th Anti-Aircraft Artillery Regiment became operational; at the end of the V-1 attacks the regiment had accounted for 56 of the flying bombs. A V-1 flying bomb brought down by British guns tragically fell on Twiss Road, Hythe in Kent in southern Britain. It destroyed houses and killed a family of 5 also injuring a further 17 some seriously. Flight Officer Peter Graham almost lost his life when diving down from 12,000 feet he levelled up too close to his target; the slip stream threw his Spitfire fighter over, but he managed to recover, only to see his target, a V-1 flying bomb, fly between the wires of the balloon defence.
16 Aug 1944 A V-1 flying bomb exploded in High Street of Walthamstow in east London, England, United Kingdom killing 17 and injuring 62. Nine more people were killed further south in Brockley. Deptford in south-east London received its 7th bomb which damaged houses that were already being repaired and killed 7. Officers and men of the squadrons based at RAF Dettling, north-east of Maidstone, Kent, southern England were not amused when a bomb was shot down and exploded not far from their control tower and sending three airmen to hospital.
17 Aug 1944 Anti-aircraft gunners using proximity fuzed shells at Folkestone, Kent, England, United Kingdom brought down 27 flying bombs during the day, all landing in the sea close to the beaches. The batteries at nearby Hythe accounted for a further 16, also due in large part to the proximity fuzes. As usual the number of bombs being launched meant that some got through to the London area. One bomb landed only yards from where one exploded four days earlier killing another 3 residents. The worst incident was at Rotherhithe Street in Bermondsey where 17 were killed and more than 60 injured. Later in the afternoon 16 residents of Mossbury Road in Lavender Hill south London were killed.
18 Aug 1944 A V-1 bomb blew up and destroyed the railway bridge over Oak Lane in Newington, Kent, England, United Kingdom. This happened as an express train was approaching. The locomotive and tender jumped the gap, but the first two carriages crashed onto the road. Seven passengers and a railway worker who had run to the bridge for shelter were killed. Two days later the bridge was repaired, and traffic was as normal.
18 Aug 1944 Flight Lieutenant Brian Williams of 605 Squadron RAF flying his Mosquito VI fighter from RAF Manston brought down 2 V-1 flying bombs on his patrol bringing his total to 5 in just two weeks of action. A typically economic report entered by pilots on patrol was written by Flight Lieutenant K. A. Roediger of 456 squadron RAAF: "23.24hrs attacked Diver astern, height 1,200ft, speed 360 mph fired at range of 1,200 feet. Target dived straight in and exploded on ground."
19 Aug 1944 A V-1 flying bomb went astray and impacted in Norfolk, England, United Kingdom near RAF Thorpe Abbots, the base of the 100th Bomber Group (The bloody One Hundredth). The base diarist commented that, "The tannoy gave a red alert and two seconds later the buzz bomb blew". Three Polish squadrons (316, 315 and 306) were in action, shooting down 12 V-1 flying bombs between them, with Warrant officer Józef Feruga (316 Squadronn) taking down 3 of them over Dungeness, Kent.
20 Aug 1944 Three V-1 flying bombs caused 16 deaths in the area around Twickenham Road, Feltham and Studeley Road in Stockwell, both of London, England, United Kingdom. Pilot Officer John Bilodeau RCAF (129 Squadron) flying Mustang III FB395/DV-Y fighter appeared to spin out of low cloud and crash into the sea, this was the squadron's first loss of a pilot whilst combatting the flying bombs.
21 Aug 1944 Willesden in north-west London received its second V-1 flying bomb in two days, the latest impacting in College Road where 20 were killed and many injured another. 29 lives were lost and 58 hospitalized in Wharnecliffe Gardens, Marylebone in south-east London. The anti-aircraft battery in Dover had their best day, shooting down over 36 bombs over the sea and beaches.
22 Aug 1944 111/KG3 of the German Air Force launched 21 sorties during the early hours from their new base at Venlo in the south east of the Netherlands. All Heinkel bombers returned safely after launching their V-1 flying bombs. One of these impacted on just half a mile down Oak Lane, where the railway bridge had just been repaired. Another clipped some elm trees near some cottages and span into on of them killing a man and a woman, orphaning the two children who were dug out of the wreckage unhurt.
23 Aug 1944 Fifty-one V-1 flying bombs were brought down by anti-aircraft fire using proximity fuzes over the coast at Folkestone, Kent, southeastern England, United Kingdom; all but two crashed into the sea. The railway line out of Folkestone was damaged by another bomb shot down by a fighter of 315 Squadron (Polish) RAF. Thirteen more were brought down by the anti-aircraft batteries at Lydd, Kent, one of which exploded and scattered propaganda leaflets over the town. One V-1 flying bomb that made it to South London was brought down when it hit barrage balloon cables at Skeet Hill House, Orpington. A V-1 flying bomb hit Oakleigh Road in Brunswick Park, East Barnet, north of the river Thames, killing 33 as houses and shops collapsed with the blast. Another fell nearby in the centre of the football pitch which had been emptied. Yet another that made it through the defences badly damaged the village church near the perimeter of RAF Stradishall in Suffolk, shortly after it had been crowded with a harvest thanksgiving service.
23 Aug 1944 At 0801 hours a V-1 flying bomb exploded at Oakleigh Road, Brunswick Park, East Barnet, London, England, United Kingdom, killing 33 and injuring a further 212 people. The bomb impacted on the Standard Telephone and Cable factory.
24 Aug 1944 A heavy anti-aircraft gun position in Annerley Road, Penge, London, England, United Kingdom took a direct hit from a V-1 flying bomb, killing all 7 of the gun crew. The anti-aircraft guns along the coast had another good day thanks to their proximity fuzed shells taking account of over 65 flying bombs, many before they reached the mainland. The spectacle of seeing the bombs get hit and explode had become somewhat of a daily routine along the coast, many of the impact sites were visited by curious boys on their cycles before any home guard unit got to them. Parts of the bombs were being collected as trophies, a spark plug being the big prize.
25 Aug 1944 The amount of V-1 flying bombs being sent over the English Channel was now noticeably decreasing as the Allied armies pushed into the Netherlands and captured and destroyed the launching sites. The German Air Force still were able to launch missiles with the Heinkel bombers of III /KG3 which had been moved east-wards to other airfields. Just before midnight a V-1 flying bomb came down in Carrington Road, Dartford, Kent, England, United Kingdom killing 12 people as they slept in their houses.
26 Aug 1944 Whilst engaged escorting RAF Marauder bombers on a mission Flight Officer Ted Topham (91 Squadron), flying his Spitfire LFIX fighter, sighted a V-1 flying bomb heading across the English Channel which he chased and brought down into the sea. This was his 10th kill and would be the squadron's 186th and final V-1 flying bomb brought down.
27 Aug 1944 A total of 18 V-1 flying bombs were brought down within an hour by the anti-aircraft batteries at Folkstone and Hythe in Kent, England, United Kingdom. Flight Lieutenant Francis "Togs" Mellersh of 96 Squadron flying out of RAF Ford shot down a V-1 flying bomb as it passed the anti-aircraft guns at Dungeness on the Kent coast; this bomb brought his score to 43 and the squadron's to 176. Flight Lieutenant Gordon Bonham RNZAF of 501 Squadron brought down 4 bombs on his patrol and found he had to land on a farm as his Tempest V fighter had run dry of fuel; the farmer's son watched him land and took him to have lunch at the farm after telephoning for fuel to be brought in; the process of refuelling was slow as 4-gallon drums had to be carried over the field; after taking off, Bonham treated the family to a show of aerobatics.
28 Aug 1944 Of 97 V-1 flying bombs launched this day from the Netherlands only 4 got through the anti-aircraft and fighter cordon, the fighters taking down 23 and the anti-aircraft guns 65 (Folkestone hitting 58), the remainder struck barrage balloon wires. Some of the bombs were found to be carrying propaganda leaflets. Only two serious casualties were reported during the day. Although 41 squadron had been stood down from V-1 patrols Flight Lieutenant Terry Spencer whilst carrying out tests in his Spitfire XII fighter saw a bomb passing over the town of Rye, Kent, England, United Kingdom he gave chase and brought it down in farmland; it was the Unit's 53rd and last victory.
29 Aug 1944 One of the last V-1 flying bombs to fall on south-east London, England, United Kingdom glided down in a shallow dive at 1440 hours, its wing collided with the steeple of Eltham's Parish Church; the subsequent blast killed 2 and injured 50 more. 200 houses were badly damaged by blast in the town of Lydd, a village on the Romney marshes in Kent in southern England. Flight Lieutenant D. F. Ruchwaldy, 129 Squadron RAF shot down 4 V-1 flying bombs as he crossed the English Channel; the first over Dungeness and two more in mid-Channel. As he approached the French coast he sighted a fourth and gave chase and opened fire, he then came under friendly fire from a Royal Navy vessel; the bomb blew up and he flew through the blast. Upon landing he claimed the last bomb, saying that the Navy's shooting was not up to much and the could not possibly have hit the thing.
31 Aug 1944 In the early morning hours between 0300 and 0630 hours, German Air Force III K/G3 launched twenty V-1 flying bombs with Gloucester, England, United Kingdom as the target. Only 8 got across and over the coast and 6 of these fell to earth in Suffolk and the other two in Essex. One of the bombs injured 7 people in Suffolk near to Harleston. One bomb brought down by a fighter near the coast impacted near Whitstable in Kent seriously injuring four people. One of the Heinkel bombers flown by Unteroffizier Lorenz Gruber crashed at Vossenberg in Belgium on the return flight, all the crew perished. This was the final operation of the of the month by the aircraft of III K/G3, they had flown 228 sorties for the loss of 3 aircraft, a better return from the previous month.
1 Sep 1944 Several waves of V-1 flying bombs were launched across the English Channel toward Britain, most failed to make their targets being brought down by coastal gunners; Folkestone batteries brought down 19 and saw 3 more destroyed by fighters behind them. Of the 19 brought down by batteries, Hythe got 9, while Dover brought down 6. The credit for the third of the 3 brought down by fighters was given to Warrant Officer Tommy Hetherington of 129 Squadron, brought down in the afternoon; this was his unit's 66th bomb to be destroyed; Hetherington had very little ammunition left and although seeing strikes he ran out flying around the bomb he managed to upset the bombs gyros with his slipstream, the bomb fell into the sea 5 miles from Dover on the British coast. One bomb that succeeded in getting through exploded close to the battery at Lyddon Spout beach, Dover. It wounded 4 soldiers on guard. The battery had been upgraded to Mark XXIV six-inch guns.
2 Sep 1944 A sortie was carried out by II/KG 101 of the German Air Force, the target being Allied shipping in the English Channel. The plans were to co-ordinate with bomb-carrying Fw 109 aircraft from 2/KG200 but it was not successful. A Ju 88 aircraft crashed at Warsop in Nottinghamshire in central England, United Kingdom, another was brought down at Hothfield, Kent, southern England. Following this unsuccessful attack, II/KG101 was disbanded and a new unit III/KG66 was formed commanded by Hauptmann Kurt Capesius flying from Burg airfield near Magdeburg, Germany.
2 Sep 1944 In Britain, a V-1 flying bomb landed on RAF Hawkinge destroying a Spitfire fighter of 350 squadron and wounding some airmen. Another fell on the perimeter of RAF Nacton in Ipswich, killing a RAF non-commissioned officer and destroying a house. Records later showed that by this date, the effective end of the V-1 assault from France, 8,617 bombs had been ground launched against the United Kingdom. German AIr Force unit III K/G3 had launched about 410, mostly against London, however the Germans still had more to send.
3 Sep 1944 Heinkel aircraft of III/KG3 of the German Air Force made 23 sorties with V-1 flying bombs being launched against London, Portsmouth, Southampton, and Gloucester of England, United Kingdom. 3 of these bombs came down in East Anglia, at Hill Farm in Felixstowe on the Suffolk coast, Langham in the east midlands and Dedham, near Colchester in Essex, other bombs fell in various areas of the home counties but caused very little damage. A veteran Luftwaffe pilot, Horst Juventus, who had been posted to III/KG3 recalled that the pilots all felt that the Luftwaffe were finished and hated to fly the Heinkel aircraft with the flying bomb attached. "Some crews", he said, "just dumped the bombs as soon as possible in order to get home safely." Also on this date, in the early morning, the 4 remaining Mistel aircraft with II/KG101 again headed out to launch against London, the attack was to be co-ordinated with that of bomb carrying Fw 190 aircraft from 2/KG200, but it failed. 2 of the Ju 88 Mistel aircraft crossed the English coast, one of which crashed at Warsop in Nottinghamshire and the other only just made it over the coast to crash at Hothfield, Kent. Following this II/KG101 was disbanded and a new Mistel unit, III/KG66 came into being commanded by Hauptmann Kurt Cepesius at Burg airfield near Magdeburg, Germany.
4 Sep 1944 23 sorties of Heinkel bombers, carrying V-1 flying bombs, operated by German Air Force III/KG3 from Venlo, Netherlands took off against London, Portsmouth, and Gloucester in Britain. 3 came down in East Anglia and one reached Eyeworth in Bedfordshire. Veteran German pilot Horst Juventus had been posted to III/KG3 and recalled "They [V-1 flying bombs] were obviously a very indiscriminate weapon and really served no good purpose. But we had our orders. I flew from Gilze-Rijen over the North Sea for a distance before igniting the V-1s and launching them. These things were a positive menace as they did not fly true and we were in great danger with the contraption beneath us. I am sure some crews released them as soon as we were out of sight of land."
6 Sep 1944 The British government issued a communique after a meeting of the Chiefs of the Imperial Staff saying that the V-1 flying bombs to this date had killed 5,817 people, and with 22,870 slightly wounded another 17,086 hospitalised. It finished by adding that the enemy had been completely driven out of static launch sites and that a small-scale attempt was still being made to launch by aircraft. "Except possibly for a last few shots, the Battle of London is over-we have beaten Hitler's secret weapon, the V-1, which was to have terrorised Britain into making a negotiated peace."
7 Sep 1944 British Member of Parliament Duncan Sandys, Winston Churchill's son-in-law who had been made responsible for coordinating the defences against the V-1 flying bombs, confidently predicted that "Except fot a few shots, the Battle for London is over". It was not within a day the V-2s (the second of Adolf Hitler's secret weapons) would begin to fall on the British capital.
16 Sep 1944 13 He III bombers of I/KG53 of the German Air Force from Varelbusch, near Bremen, Germany took off to launch V-1 flying bombs, one crashed and exploded on take off killing the crew. 3 of the aircraft were intercepted and shot down over the sea. Royal Naval gunners hitting 2 and the other by a Mosquito aircraft of 96 Squadron flown by Lieutenant Ian Dobie. As they crossed the British coast 2 more were shot down by a Tempest aircraft flown by Flight Officer Bud Miller USAAF of 501 Squadron. Of the bombs launched, one hit a water tower at Saffron Walden, a market town in Essex. The tower was at the end of the runway of nearby Debden airfield and shook the men of 4th Fighter Group billet there. General Sir Fredrick Pile in charge of Britain's anti-aircraft defences noted that after an interval the attacks were being stepped up and he was having trouble shifting the guns into places where they could combat the bombs being launched by aircraft.
17 Sep 1944 A German Heinkel bomber was lost when 14 of them took off from Varrelbusch, near Bremen, Germany on a sortie to launch V-1 flying bombs over eastern England, United Kingdom. Unteroffizier Hans Jördens ditched into Lake Braassemermeer in southern Netherlands, the crew survived but the aircraft was written off; it had flown into friendly fire. 9 of the returning aircraft were also damaged by the flak around the Dutch coast. These messages were all picked up on Utlra intercepts. A Mosquito aircraft from 96 Squadron brought down a flying bomb after its launch over the Kent coast of southern England.
18 Sep 1944 Spitfire fighter pilot Flight Lieutenant D. A. J. Draper of 4 Squadron, flying a reconnaissance flight over Zoutkamp, Netherlands sighted what he thought was a Do 217 aircraft at 22,000 feet, as his aircraft was unarmed he went in to do a dummy attack and reported that the aircraft released a V-1 flying bomb before escaping. It was thought that only Heinkel bombers could carry the flying bombs but there was a certain amount of experimenting going on and Draper might well had been correct.
20 Sep 1944 German Air Force III/KG3 flew 21 sorties and 68 Squadron RAF was vectored to a position over the Dutch coastal Islands. A Mosquito aircraft flown by Flight Sergeant John Jenkins failed to return. It was presumed that the aircraft was brought down by the explosion of its target, which was a V-1 flying bomb. One of the V-1 flying bombs launched by the German bombers impacted on the beach next to the perimeter of the Experimental Radar Facility at Bawdsey Manor near Felixstowe eastern United Kingdom. One that fell in a farmer's field at Chediston in the County of Suffolk had the number 701422 and another that destroyed 3 houses at Hacheston near Ipswich in the same County was 701427. This numbering only appeared on the air launched bombs.
25 Sep 1944 British 501 Squadron's Tempest aircraft continued to fly all weather patrols against the V-1 flying bombs. The American Flight Officer Bud Miller shot down his 9th and final bomb but Flight Lieutenant Gordon "Snowy" Bonham DFC was killed when his Tempest aircraft crashed in bad weather at Spitfield Farm in Essex, England, United Kingdom; the New Zealander had flown against the Japanese in Singapore in 1942, and had 5 flying bombs to his credit. Four flying bombs penetrated the defences, one falling in Chersey, Surrey, one in Essex and another at Hessett, 5 miles east of Bury St Edmunds, it exploded in the middle of Mellfield Woods, damaging the farm house.
28 Sep 1944 German Air Force III/KG3 flew 20 sorties and lost two of their aircraft. The only other contacts were with a Royal Navy Avenger aircraft that was intercepted by Flight Officer Henley and a Warwick recognised in good time by Squardon Leader Humphrey, he continued on his patrol and claimed his first flying bomb over The hague, The Netherlands. All 7 of the bombs that got through the defence fell in the East Anglia region of England, United Kingdom, most landed in farmland and there were no injuries caused.
30 Sep 1944 A V-1 flying bomb caused 5 deaths and many injuries when a row of houses was demolished at Ardleigh in Essex, England, United Kingdom. The USAAF base at Thorpe Abbots, home of the 100th Bomb Group ("The Bloody 100th") reported buzz bombs flying over the airfield at 150 feet before exploding in the farm fields surrounding the base. A US 8th Air Force 750-bomber raid on Munster and Handorf in Germany killed the Staffelkapitän and the training officer of German Air Force 7/KG3; records captured by the Allies showed that 177 flying bombs had been launched by the Staffel during 13 nights of sorties in Sep 1944.
3 Oct 1944 German Air Force III/KG 66 at Burg, near Magdeburg, Germany, reported an inventory of 13 Mistel unmanned glide bombs; of which 10 were serviceable. 5 of the aircraft took off on this night to attack the bridges at Nijmegen, the Netherlands. The weather conditions were poor and 3 of the aircraft crashed into the Teutoburger Wald; Oberst Horst Polster, the Staffelkapitän, was killed as were Unteroffizier Fritz Scheffler and Unteroffizier Paul Barinski. The other pilots could not find the target in the fog and yet another was brought down.
6 Oct 1944 11 German Heinkel bombers carrying V-1 flying bombs took off on the evening and were met by British Mosquito aircraft from 25 Squadron, resulting in losses for both sides. HK256 aircraft crewed by British Flight Officer Jack Henderson and British Flight Officer Roland Nicholls crashed into the sea at the start of the attack; Henderson survived and became a prisoner of war but the navigator Nicholls was killed. The former Hurricane fighter pilot Flight Lieutenant Alf Marshall DFM, flying his first night mission brought down his 20th air victory in the fight which saw another He 111 bomber go down, victim of 68 Squadron pilot Flight Officer John Haskell.
7 Oct 1944 More German Heinkel bombers carrying V-1 flying bombs were shot down. One V-1 flying bomb escaped the fighters and anti-aircraft guns and flew into a balloon cable over the village of Fawkham near Gravesend, Kent, England, United Kingdom and demolished several houses. There were 17 fatalities and 54 injured, 20 of them seriously when another fell at the Park Road/Barrington Road.
7 Oct 1944 German Air Force Oberfeldwebel Lothar Gall's Heinkel bomber collided with the mast giving out the beacon Sonne Elektra navigation aid to the German pilots; Dutch people in the area thought that the unexploded V-1 flying bomb attached to the bomber was a fuel tank and were killed as they broke in open and it exploded.
13 Oct 1944 In Britain, V-1 flying bomb fell on the Suffolk town of Southwold and caused major damage but surprisingly no serious injuries; in all 337 houses were damaged, 68 shops, three churches and the fire station were all reported as being victims in some way to the blast. Another impacted on RAF Raydon near Ipswich, the bomb narrowly missed the bomb dump concealed in woods next to the perimeter, at the time of the strike bombs were being loaded onto transport trucks.
14 Oct 1944 In Britain, a V-1 flying bomb landed in a field by the Suffolk village of Hopton and failed to explode. Bomb Disposal Officer Lieutenant C. H. Bassett was killed whilst removing one of the fuses. Flying Officer Lulu Deleuze of 501 Squadron shot down two V-1 flying bombs in his Tempest fighter, one of them came down by the Red Lion Public House injuring a number of customers.
15 Oct 1944 A total of 9 V-1 flying bombs were air launched over the East Anglian coast of Britain. One got through the defensive cordon and came down in the London Borough of Southwark at the junction of Athenlay Road and Fernholm Road killing 8 residents.
17 Oct 1944 Some 70 houses were damaged in the village of Kirby-le-Soken in Essex, England, United Kingdom when a V-1 came down. This date marked an increase in the number of flying bombs launched over the rest of the month. More night fighters were now sent up to the east coast.
22 Oct 1944 Two V-1 flying bombs were brought down by British pilot Flight Officer Johnny Johnson. Two people were killed and 69 were injured by the blast of a V-1 flying bomb exploded at the Orsett Road-Derby Road junction in Grays, Essex, England, United Kingdom.
26 Oct 1944 On attachment to 68 Squadron RAF for night fighter training, First Lieutenant Sam Peebles USN and his navigator Ensign Dock Grinndal USN chased three V-1 flying bombs that went into thick cloud but, sighting a fourth, they dived to follow and got to 200 yards range at only 400 feet above the sea. "We had reached 350 mph and gave it a short burst, the engine stopped, and it exploded and shook the Mosquito a little", he put in his report. A V-1 flying bomb that had evaded the defences came down on the railway line at Palmer's Green Station in Enfield in London, England, United Kingdom, causing the line to be closed for a day and slightly injuring some railway workers.
31 Oct 1944 V-1 flying bombs struck Britain. Fifteen people were killed in the south eastern counties and a further three were killed in West Ham, London. At 0650 hours a V-1 flying bomb struck the Marie Hotel at Coulsdon, London; the hotel was used as an old people's private hotel; seventeen of the residents were killed and ten more seriously injured.
4 Nov 1944 Another mini-blitz of V-1 flying bombs started in the evening after some quiet days. 17 Heinkel bombers of III/KG3 started the assault; during the next seven nights, 12 of the Heinkels failed to return, half falling to the night fighters. A Beaufighter aircraft of the Fighter Interception Development Squadron (FIDS) from RAF Coltishall, flown by Squadron Leader P. J. Howard-Williams brought down one and as he was heading for home picked up another on his radar and shot it down. The evening proved disastrous for the crews of II/KG53, of the 14 aircraft that left Varrelbusch, 5 failed to return and another crashed upon landing. Six aircraft totally lost along with 23 aircrew.
5 Nov 1944 Another disastrous night for the Luftwaffe with a further 5 Heinkel bombers launching V-1 flying bombs lost. Two were victims of 68 squadron's Mosquito aircraft and another being brought down by Squadron Leader Bill Maguire DFC (with Flight Officer W. D. Jones DFC) in their Beaufighter aircraft. 17 crews from German Luftwaffe 11/KG53 airborne that night was instructed to carry out attacks on Portsmouth in southern Britain; none of the bombs hit the town.
8 Nov 1944 The second largest cinema in England, the Gaumont State Theatre in Holloway, north London, England, United Kingdom, was hit by a V-1 flying bomb. The cinema's frontage and restaurant were blown out, only the main walls and part of the foyer were left undamaged. However, the most serious incident of the day was at Rochester, North Kent, in which a V-1 flying bomb impacted at at 2045 hours on the junction of Grafton Avenue and Gerrard's Avenue, killing 8 and seriously wounding 17.
9 Nov 1944 25 Squadron RAF had success during the night over the North Sea. Mosquito aircraft MV521 crewed by Flight Lieutenants Jim Lomas and Norman Fleet shot down a Heinkel bomber off the coast near Clacton, Essex, England, United Kingdom. A V-1, damaged by a fighter, crashed at Brentwood in Essex, killing 3 and injuring 10 in Mount Crescent.
10 Nov 1944 A total of 29 V-1 flying bomb sorties were flown by Heinkel bomber crews, some flying twice during the night. The first flights took off from Varrelbusch, the Netherlands at 1758 hours and the last to return landed at 0515 hours on the next day. The night was a bad one again for KG53, two aircraft from 4 Staffel failing to return from the operation: A1+NM piloted by Oberfähnrich Walter Strump and A1+HM by Leutnant Günther Scholz plus another from 3 Staffel; there were no survivors from any of these losses.
14 Nov 1944 Mosquito aircraft HK289/WM-K of 68 Squadron took off from RAF Coltishall in Norfolk, England, United Kingdom at 1805 hours flown by one of the unit's American crews, Lieutenants Joe Black from Virginia and Tom Aiken from Pennsylvania both USN Reserve officers. The crew advised that they had a contact on their radar and were in pursuit. At 1909 hours, a V-1 flying bomb passed over the batteries at the village of Hopton, behind it was Black's Mosquito aircraft. The briefing to pilots in such situation was to lose speed and height and to circle at asset distance from the coast with navigation lights on. It was supposed that Black was so focused on the pursuit that they failed to notice they were in the batteries' area. Proximity shells burst all around the aircraft which crashed on Decoy Farm, Blundeston, Suffolk killing the Americans.
23 Nov 1944 In Britain, the Suffolk and Essex coastal batteries, who were now in place and fully operational, brought down a total of 25 V-1 flying bombs between the previous night and this night.
24 Nov 1944 In Britain, the batteries in Suffolk and Essex coastal areas brought down 11 V-1 flying bombs during the evening and another German He 111 aircraft was brought down by a Mosquito night fighter of 456 Squadron flown by Flight Officer Fred Stevens RAAF and Flight Officer Andy Kellett RAAF who had chased the German aircraft for 20 minutes. The Heinkel aircraft of 1/KG53, with its V-1 flying bomb still attached, fell into the sea ten miles off Egmond Aan Zee, the Netherlands. However, the Mosquito aircraft from the same Unit was posted missing, the reasons for the loss have never been found, it was thought at the time that it was lost due to damage sustained in its target's explosion.
30 Mar 1945 At 1243 hours, British Royal Marine anti-aircraft gunners on the gun platform 12 miles off Felixstowe (Churchill Fort) shot down the last V-1 flying bomb to be fired toward Britain.

Did you enjoy this article or find this article helpful? If so, please consider supporting us on Patreon. Even $1 per month will go a long way! Thank you.

Share this article with your friends:


Stay updated with WW2DB:

 RSS Feeds

Visitor Submitted Comments

1. Anonymous says:
7 Nov 2017 10:49:20 AM

What is this weapon's "common" name?
2. Commenter identity confirmed Alan Chanter says:
7 Nov 2018 12:11:49 AM

The jet engine of the V-1 had an eerie sound. Once heard it was never forgotten. Witnesses described the sound in different, vivid ways:

* A train trundling over a wooden bridge.

* A sinister grunting.

* A washing machine.

* A cough, clattering like a diesel truck.

* A Model T climbing a hill.

* A load of biscuit tins rattling.

This particular engine note led to the British nicknames for the V.1- the 'doodlebug' or the 'buzz bomb'.

The British people soon learned that while a V-1 puttered its noisy way across the sky. they were safe. The danger came when the engine cut out. Flying bombs were loaded with only enough fuel to reach their target. When this ran out, the engine failed and the missile dived. Civilians described a 'dreadful silence' that lasted about twelve seconds-the time from the engine stopping to the warhead exploding.

All visitor submitted comments are opinions of those making the submissions and do not reflect views of WW2DB.

Posting Your Comments on this Topic

Your Name
Your Email
 Your email will not be published
Comment Type
Your Comments


1. We hope that visitor conversations at WW2DB will be constructive and thought-provoking. Please refrain from using strong language. HTML tags are not allowed. Your IP address will be tracked even if you remain anonymous. WW2DB site administrators reserve the right to moderate, censor, and/or remove any comment. All comment submissions will become the property of WW2DB.

2. For inquiries about military records for members of the World War II armed forces, please see our FAQ.

Change View
Desktop View

Search WW2DB
More on Vergeltungswaffe 1
Related Books:
» German V-Weapon Sites 1943-45
» Operation Paperclip
» The Doodlebugs: The Story of the Flying Bombs

Vergeltungswaffe 1 Missile Photo Gallery
British Spitfire fighter attempting to topple a German V-1 flying bomb with its wing tip, date unknownV-1 rocket flew across England, circa 1944
See all 8 photographs of Vergeltungswaffe 1 Missile

Famous WW2 Quote
"Goddam it, you'll never get the Purple Heart hiding in a foxhole! Follow me!"

Captain Henry P. Jim Crowe, Guadalcanal, 13 Jan 1943

Support Us

Please consider supporting us on Patreon. Even $1 a month will go a long way. Thank you!

Or, please support us by purchasing some WW2DB merchandise at TeeSpring, Thank you!