The Blitz 1940–41

The Luftwaffe's biggest strategic bombing campaign

The Blitz 1940–41 cover

The Blitz 1940–41

The Luftwaffe's biggest strategic bombing campaign


An illustrated history of how the Luftwaffe intended 'the Blitz' to knock Britain out of the war, emphasising the German point of view and detailing how Britain's defences and civilians responded.

The Blitz - the German 'blitzkrieg' of Britain's industrial and port cities - was one of the most intensive bombing campaigns of World War II. Cities from London to Glasgow, Belfast to Hull, and Liverpool to Cardiff were targeted in an attempt to destroy Britain's military-industrial facilities and force it out of the war.

Most histories of the Blitz concentrate on the civilian experience of 'life under the bombs' or the fighter pilots of the RAF but, in military terms, the Blitz was also the Luftwaffe's biggest and most ambitious strategic bombing campaign. Focusing on both sides, this book places particular emphasis on the hitherto under-represented Luftwaffe view of the campaign and looks at the new technology and tactics at its heart. From the innovative development of specialist night-fighters to the 'Battle of the Beams' that pitted German electronic navigation systems against British countermeasures, the Blitz demonstrated the effects of developing technology on aerial warfare.

Describing and analyzing the strategy, tactics and operations of both the Luftwaffe and the UK's air defences during the period between September 1940 and May 1941, author Julian Hale demonstrates that, for a variety of reasons, there was little chance of the Luftwaffe achieving any of its aims.

Using primary sources, spectacular original artwork, 3D diagrams and maps, this study shines a fresh light on how and why the world's first true strategic air offensive failed.

Table of Contents

Luftwaffe order of battle, 7 September, 1941
The aircraft
Equipment and tactics
RAF order of battle, 7 September, 1941
Civil defence
The aircraft
The Blitz begins, 7 September-13 October
The night assault
The conflict over future strategy
The London Blitz renewed
Fighter defence
The campaign on the Midlands and Southern ports
Regenschirm: The Birmingham Blitz
'Crucible': Sheffield
The Manchester Blitz
The Southampton Blitz
London campaign renewed
The Anti-Aircraft Contribution
Bromide, Domino and Starfish
The Battle of the ports
The Swansea and Cardiff Blitzes
The Clydebank Blitz- Problems over Bristol
Hull, Plymouth-Devonport
The Anti-shipping campaign

Product details

Published 17 Aug 2023
Format Ebook (Epub & Mobi)
Edition 1st
Extent 96
ISBN 9781472857873
Imprint Osprey Publishing
Illustrations Illustrated throughout with around 60 photos and at least 14 pages of colour illustrations
Series Air Campaign
Short code ACM 38
Publisher Bloomsbury Publishing

About the contributors


Julian Hale

Julian Hale read History at Lancaster University a…


Mads Bangsø

Mads Bangsø is an aviation artist with many years…


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