Raid 9: 2nd August 1942

November 7, 2009

CITY of YORK

CIVIL DEFENCE

Air Raid Damage, 2nd Aug. 1942 Report on Raid

I have to report that on Sunday, 2nd Aug. a lone raider, flying low, dropped 4 bombs on the city at 16.36 hours.

The Observer Alarm was received at 16.32 hours and the siren sounded at 16.40 hours.

Two bombs exploded in the vicinity of 26 Skeldergate and Albert St. Walmgate respectively and approximately 400 properties were damaged in varying degree.

Unexploded bombs fell at Buckingham Works, Buckingham St. and at the foot of the steps to Clifford Tower. These have been dealt with by the Bomb Disposal Squads.

The services required were quickly in action and casualties promptly attended to.

Dead

1 male. N.F.S.

Seriously injured.

2 males.
7 females.

Slightly injured.

13 males.
13 females.
10 children.

(Signed) G.H. Hunt.
A.R.P. Officer.

CITY of YORK

CIVIL DEFENCE

Air Raid Damage, 2nd Aug. 1942 Report on Raid

Warnings received were:-

No. 801 – 16.45 hrs. Red to 16.50 hrs. White. (No purple message or Observer).

Areas affected – Guildhall – Post G.3.

Castlegate. – Post C.3.

At 16.40 hours four H.E. Bomb explosions were heard and damage was reported at Skeldergate and Albert St. U.X.B’s were also reported at Cookes Works in Bishophill and Castle Grounds, Clifford St.

Abnormal blast damage was caused by the bomb in Skeldergate extending from Micklegate to Coney St. and High Ousegate. Two slight casualties taken to post G.3. for treatment, and one fatal casualty, in the N.F.S. River Patrol boat.

No casualties reported from the Incident in Albert Street.

Google Map of Raid 9 (2nd August 1942):

Key to symbols:

High Explosive High Explosive
Incendiary Device Incendiary
Unexploded Bomb Unexploded Bomb (U.X.B)
Casualties Casualties

Raid 8: 29th April 1942 (Baedeker Raid)

March 1, 2009

CITY of YORK.

Civil Defence.

Air Raid – 29th April 1942. Report on operations to date.

General.

The turn out of personnel of all services was satisfactory, and no report of insufficiency has been received. Reports also indicate excellent work in dealing with casualties. Mutual aid was available before our own resources were exhausted.

Incidents.

65 H.E. bombs fell and practically all did damage to a greater or lesser degree.

24 U.X.B’s reported on Buff Form covering 8 exploded, 6 dealt with or to be dealt with, and 10 false reports.

14 clusters of incendiary bombs fell.

Casualties. (Within the City.)

Civilian

Male.

Female.

Children.

Total.

Dead.

23

39

8

70.

Seriously injured.

42

43

7

92.

Slightly injured.

68

41

4

113.

C.D. Personnel.

Dead

4

-

-

4.

Seriously Injured

1

-

-

1.

(Within the Flaxton R.D.C Area.)

Civilian

Male.

Female.

Children.

Total.

Dead.

2

7

5

14.

Seriously injured.

3

3

-

6.

Slightly injured.

-

1

-

1.


Ambulance Service.

Within a few minutes of bombs dropping the vehicles were ready for action. There was no panic although bombs were falling. All “off duty” drivers and attendants reported for duty and the standard of efficiency displayed in bandaging, care of the wounded and transport was very high.

Transport.

All vehicles owned by the Emergency Committee were in commission, and those utilised (approximately 90%) turned out promptly without break-down of any description.

Several vehicles were slightly damaged at incidents, but necessary repairs were carried out without delay.

The Mobile break-down crane did useful work in facilitating quick removal of heavy debris.

All demands for transport made to the Sub-District Manager (Ministry of Transport) were met without delay.

None of the six petrol stations rented by the committee were damaged and two were opened immediately raiding ceased.

First Aid Posts.

Acomb.

9 casualties.

No difficulties.

City Infirmary.

7 casualties.

12 stretcher cases referred to City Gen. Hos.

Rougier Street.

45 casualties.

No difficulties.

Hungate.

1 casualty.

No difficulties.

Clifton F.A. Point

22 casualties.

personnel carried on with windows blown out and water heater damaged.

Dringhouses. F.A.P.

No casualties.

First Aid Parties.

Excellent work. Every casualty living when located was extricated alive. Corpses were correctly labelled in practically every case. Priority of despatch to Hospital or First Aid Post according to urgency of treatment was observed.

The First Aid Treatment by Wardens deserved commendation.

Rescue.

Only two incidents still operating, with one A.T.S. girl to be accounted for at one incident and one Sister at Convent in the other.

Rescue parties functioned to the fullest extent and the results are as follows, excluding the above –

37 Rescued alive.

50 Recovered dead.

Mortuary.

This unpleasant task was carried through in a most satisfactory manner. The work was a great physical strain but the staff under the able direction of the Superintendent dealt with the situation most efficiently.

Control.

The Control and Telephone Room Staff acted up to the best traditions of service and there was no panic when they realised the serious situation in which they were placed prior to evacuation which was carried out without mishap.

I desire to record my thanks to the Lord Mayor for kndly allowing us to use the Mansion House as the use of the Alternative Control was out of the question.

A.R.P. Officer.

The Guildhall,

YORK

4th May 1942.

CITY of YORK

CIVIL DEFENCE

Air Raid, April 29th. 1942.

Special Report re Communications.

Up to 3.30. a.m. no special difficulty had been experienced in contacting services by telephone, but practically all lines were dead within a few minutes of this time.

The Despatch Riders and messengers were then the only means of maintaining communication with the services and I desire to pay special tribute to the willingness and expedition with which they accepted every task put before them.

Without exception they overcame many difficulties in the face of considerable personal risk.

Having regard to the fact that they had previously been Fire-fighting in an endeavour to assist the regular Fire-watchers in controlling the Guildhall fire, I think their work deserves the highest commendation.

I record my appreciation of the help given by Col. Grime in running a line from the Mansion House to Foss Islands, which was in operation by daybreak.

CITY of YORK

CIVIL DEFENCE

Air Raid Damage, 29th April, 1942 (02.40 hours)

List of Incidents in Raid of 29th April, 1942.

(Excluding Railway Property and U.X.B.)

Bootham & Clifton Area.

Location.

Type.

Remarks.

21 Baker St. York

I.B.

Fire.

Jct. of Rose St. & Wiggington Road.

H.E.

Damage.

Bootham Crescent

I.B. & H.E.

Fire, Damage, exposed Cable.

Queen Anne’s Road, Sycamore Ter. St. Peter’s School, Welwyn Flats, 16 Burton Lane

I.B.
H.E.(3)

Extensive damage; Fire; Gas main on fire.

The Avenue, Clifton.

I.B.

Fire.

Rowntree Ave.

H.E.(2)

Damage.

46 Bootham.

H.E.

People trapped.

Pickering Terr.

H.E.
I.B.

People trapped.
Gas main damaged.

47/49 Westminster Road.

H.E.

People trapped

70 Clifton.

I.B.

Fire damage.

Bootham Square.

H.E.

House demolished.

Jct. Avenue Terr – Ave. Rd.

H.E./I.B.

Damage.

Rear of Queen Anne’s School.

H.E.5.

Direct hit on shelter etc.

Annexe St. Peter’s School.

I.B.

Damage.

16/18 Westminster Road

H.E./I.B.

3 houses demolished.

St. Peter’s Football Ground.

H.E.

No damage.

Haverford” Water End.

H.E.

Damage.

River Bank at outfall of Bur Dyke (rear of St. Peters)

H.E.

No damage.

North Parade Flats.

I.B.

Burnt out.

Greencliffe Gardens rear Westminster Rd.

I.B.

Clifton Ings.

I.B.

Guildhall Area

Location.

Type.

Remarks.

Blake St.

H.E.

Damage.

St. Martin’s Church & Herald Off.

H.E. & I.B.

Damage.

Leopard Arcade, Coney St.

H.E./I.B.

Burnt out.

Guildhall.

I.B.

Burnt out.

Duncombe Place, Records Office.

I.B.

Fire.

North St. Rowntree’s old warehouse.

I.B.

Burnt out.

Railway Station entrance.

H.E./I.B.

King’s Manor

I.B.

Fire.

Exhibition Bdgs.

H.E./I.B.

Fire.

Rest Garden Station Road.

H.E.

Museum Gardens.

I.B.

Scarcroft Area.

Location.

Type.

Remarks.

Micklegate.

Flare

case originally reported as U.X.B.

Convent Nunnery Lane.

H.E.

People trapped.

Nunthorpe Crescent

H.E.

2 houses wrecked.
People trapped.

23/25 Nunthorpe Grove.

H.E.

People trapped.
Water main burst.

Jct. Nunthorpe Rd. & Price St.

H.E.

Damage.

45 Nunthorpe Gr.

H.E.

South Bank Ave.

H.E.

Fulford Area.

Location.

Type.

Remarks.

Crosslands Gr. Grants Ave.

(4) H.E./I.B.

Fire & damaged gas main.

Cavalry Barracks

H.E. (4)

Acomb Area.

Location.

Type.

Remarks.

Jct. Hamilton Dr./Collingwood Ave, and School Sports Field.

H.E (2)

Damage.

Hudson’s Joiners’ Shop, Front St.

H.E.

Damage.

Beckfield Lane opp. “Tor Garth”

H.E.(4)

Slight Damage.

Beans Field, Low Poppleton Lane.

H.E.(2)

No damage.

Sugar Beet Factory Allotments.

H.E.(3)

No damage.

Poppleton Area.

Location.

Type.

Remarks.

45 Plantation Drive

H.E.

Fire. Water main damaged.

Lavender Grove.

H.E./I.B.

Poppleton Rd. School

H.E.

Direct hit.

Chatsworth Terr.

H.E.

Amberley St.

H.E.

York disused Reservoir, Poppleton Rd.

H.E.

Between Malvern Ave./Manor Dr.

H.E.

Leeman Rd. Area.

Location.

Type.

Remarks.

North Eastern Cres. Leeman Road.

I.B.

Jct. Hanover St/Albany St.

H.E.

Jct. Stamford St./Walworth St.

H.E.

Garnett Terr., front & rear

H.E.(3)

Garfield Terr.

I.B.

Many fires.

Jct. Leeman Rd/Carlton St.

H.E.

Dukes Laundry, Leeman Rd.

I.B.

Burnt out.

Bungalows near Water Tower Road.

I.B.

Burnt out.

Jct. Chudleigh Rd./Livingstone St.

H.E.

Damage.

Clifton Ings

H.E. (2)

No damage.

Field rear of Berkeley Terr/Winchester Ave.

H.E

No damage.

Coal Depot, Leeman Road.

H.E.

No damage.

Tang Hall Area.

Location.

Type.

Remarks.

Mansfield St. Foss Islands Rd.

H.E.

People trapped.

Temple Villas.

I.B.

Osbaldwick Lane.

I.B.

Alcuin Ave.

I.B.

Tuke Ave.

I.B.

Lang Ave.

I.B.

Ingleborough Ave.

I.B.

View the York Baedeker Raid in Google Earth (york_baedeker_raids.kmz)

Google Map of the air raid of 29th April 1942

Key to symbols:

High Explosive High Explosive
Incendiary Device Incendiary
Unexploded Bomb Unexploded Bomb (U.X.B)
Casualties Casualties

Raid 7: 3rd April 1941

February 26, 2009

CITY of YORK.

Civil Defence.

Enemy Action – 3rd April 1941.

At 21.35 hours on the 3rd April 1941 the “Alert” warning was sounded and at 21.50 hours a flare and the light of many Incendiaries was seen in the Boroughbridge Road and Clifton Ings District (which was under water owing to floods).

Reports of this occurrence were received from Posts J.1., A.3., and A.4. The A.F.S. Service was advised and two units were despatched to the Sugar Beet Factory, Boroughbridge Road, and Ainsty Building Estate. No fire was found.

The Incendiary Bombs (16) which fell within the premises of the Sugar Beet Factory were dealt with by the Home Guard on duty there, only three of these having entered the buildings.

A large number of Incendiary Bombs from the same salvo fell in a line extending from the Sugar Beet Factory across the river into Clifton Ings and the North Riding Mental Hospital, where again many were dealt with by the Hospital A.R.P. Staff.

A small percentage of explosive incendiaries were detected but no casualties or damage resulted therefrom.

At 21.59 hours a report was received from Post A.4. of one H.E. bomb falling in a field behind Sherwood Grove. This bomb fell on soft ground and no damage was caused. This incident was in the West Riding Area and no action was taken by York Wardens other than reporting the matter.

Operations on 3rd April 1941

A few Incendiary Bombs and one High Explosive fell in the City at approximately 21.55 hours.

The following messages were sent to the North Eastern Regional Officer by telephone.

1. YK. 37

Time first bomb dropped 21.55. Incendiary only. time of origin 22.04 hours

2. YK. 38

Further to YK 37 Incendiaries and one High Explosive only reported. No Damage. time of origin of message 22.45 hours.

Google Map of Locations bomed on 3rd April 1941:

Key to symbols:

High Explosive High Explosive
Incendiary Device Incendiary
Unexploded Bomb Unexploded Bomb (U.X.B)
Casualties Casualties

Raid 6: 16th January 1941

February 17, 2009

City of York.

Air Raid Damage.

16th January, 1941. (03.30 hours and 05.05 hours)

Warnings received were:-

No. 411 – 02.05 hrs. Purple to 05.32 hrs White (No Yellow or Red).

No. 412 – 05.51 hrs. Yellow, 05.56 Purple to 06.15 hrs White (No Red).

Area affected – Clifton, Fishergate, Guildhall, Holgate and Monk Wards.

At 03.30 hours enemy aircraft passed over the City and Incendiary bombs of the 1 k.g. type were dropped at several points in the City, causing the following fires:-

St. Maurice Church, Monkgate, The bomb penetrated the roof and fell to the floor burning a hole approx. 2ft. 6in. in diameter under the pews.

Presbyterian Church, Priory Street. Sparks were reported coming from the roof, but no fire was found.

No. 13 Nunmill Street. I.B. penetrated the roof, cam to rest in the lath and plaster ceiling of the bedroom. Burnt through the ceiling and fell to the floor causing a fire which was extinguished by the occupants who suffered slight burns to the feet.

No. 16 Prospect Gardens, Priory St. I.B. penetrated the basement area cover and lodged in the cellar causing a small fire which was quickly extinguished.

Many other incendiaries fell at various points in the City but no fires were caused.

At 05.05 hours enemy aircraft again passed over the City and 8 H.E. bombs (presumed to be 50 k.g. type) were dropped in the Groves district. A double run was made on this occasion and the incidents numbered 1 and 2 occurred on the first run and the remaining 6 on the second.

  1. The first H.E fell on the pavement in front of No 10 St. John’s Crescent causing material damage to the front of this property and to houses on either side. Extensive damage was also caused to windows in St. John Street and district. A 4 inch gas main at the bottom of the crater was fractured and there was a leakage of water from the domestic service.

  2. The second bomb fell in Martin’s Yard, Lowther Street, approximately 10 feet from Warden’s Post N.3. A very shallow crater was caused owing to the bomb striking a stack of flag stones and detonating on impact. The Warden’s post was badly damaged and outbuildings nearby demolished. Damage was also caused to glass and surrounding property and to St. Thomas’s Church nearby.

  3. This bomb scored a direct hit at the rear of No. 6. Haxby Road, and demolished the rear end of the house and outbuildings nearby. The air raid shelter 8ft. from the point of impact was slightly damaged. Occupants of the house were indoors at the time but were not injured.

  4. School Gardens St. Hilda’s, Lowther Street. A crater was caused 8ft. x 4ft. in soft ground. The garden wall was partly demolished and damage caused to glass in surrounding property.

  5. No. 1 Dudley Street. Direct hit on outbuildings at the rear of the property. The outbuildings were completely demolished and the end walls of the house, much material damage being caused. There was also much damage to glass in surrounding property.

    There were three casualties to the incident. Mr H. bond aged 53 years sustained serious abdominal injuries and died later. Mrs. Bond had a slight cut to the head and ear and her daughter a slight cut to the forehead.

  6. Direct hit on the piggeries and garage behind No. 57 Eldon Street. Seven pigs were killed outright and two injured and subsequently destroyed. Much damage was caused to surrounding property (glass).

  7. Garden at the rear of No. 15 Penley’s Grove Street, crater was caused 8ft. x 4ft. in soft ground. Damage to outbuildings and glass in surrounding property.

  8. Rear of St. Thomas’ School, Lowther Street, in soft ground near to the lavatories attached to the school Several lavatories were demolished and damage caused to glass and ceilings of the school and the Church adjoining.

Points of interest are that the protection afforded in the newly constructed Wardens’ Posts was clearly demonstrated. A 50 k.g. bomb detonated close to the Post and although a Warden was on duty in the post at the time he escaped all injury.

The roof of the post was lifted and the walls badly cracked but no penetration by splinters or collapse occurred.

At Incident No. 3. a brick built domestic shelter (surface) stood up very well to a near miss (approximately 8ft. from the point of impact) and although the face wall was badly scarred by fragments, no penetration occurred. Any person taking cover in the shelter would have been adequately protected.

The preceding Incendiary attack entirely failed to light up any objective in the city and surprisingly few casualties were caused by the H.E. bombs, which fell in the most densely populated parts of the city.

CITY of YORK.

Civil Defence.

Reference Operations No. 20.

Report on the Operation of Civil Defence Services.

16th January 1941.

Nature of Attacks.

Raids did not appear to be directed against a target of Military or Industrial importance.

Effect of the Attack.

In the absence of a Public Air Raid Warning, the instructions of the Department on the taking of shelter could not generally be obeyed.

Operation of Services.

In dealing with the result of attack -

  1. The turnout of part-time personnel was satisfactory, being neither excessive nor insufficient. Reporting commenced at approximately 05.30 hours – shortly after the H.E. bombs had been heard.

  2. There was no difficulty in calling up personnel on call. The staff of a First Aid Post was called out on the snowball system and was in action 15 minutes after it was known to be required.

    Reporting System.

  3. Wardens’ reports were fairly satisfactory as a basis for action.

  4. Communications worked well despite damage to telephone installations at the scene of the incident.

  5. Motorcycle despatch riders were successfully used in these operations.

    Working of Services Generally.

  6. There was no delay in getting services to the spot.

  7. Incidents were dealt with on their merits, and services were not despatched in excess of requirements.

  8. No service was impeded by the none arrival of other services.

  9. Casualties were dealt with before the arrival of services.

  10. There was no difficulty in co-ordination.

  11. The public did not interfere with the operation of services and were generally helpful, particularly in dealing with Incendiary bombs.

  12. Public Utility services were quickly on the scenes of damage.

  13. Means of lighting were quite sufficient, this was helped by the fact of it being a clear moonlight night with snow on the ground.

    Rescue Parties

  14. No work of special difficulty was done.

  15. Equipment was adequate. Private houses only were involved.

  16. A First Aid Party arrived almost simultaneously with the Rescue Party.

  17. Rescue Parties were quite adequate for the type of work required.

    First Aid Parties.

  18. First Aid Parties did their work adequately. The very small number of casualties did not warrant the need for a doctor at incidents.

  19. Serious and light casualties were successfully segregated by First Aid Parties.

  20. Incident-control arrangements were not in force.

    First Aid Posts.

  21. Accommodation was adequate.

  22. Mobile Posts were not in action.

  23. Doctors reported immediately.

  24. One casualty originally sent to a First Aid Post was transferred to hospital with a suspected fractured base of the skull.

  25. It was not necessary to make arrangements for getting casualties home.

    Ambulances

  26. The number of ambulances and sitting-wounded case cars was adequate in relation to the number of casualties.

  27. No part-time auxiliary ambulances were required.

  28. The exchange system of stretchers and blankets at Hospitals worked according to plan.

    Other Services.

  29. Arrangements for salvage of property, removal of debris and rehousing of homeless persons were quite satisfactory for this small raid. Children were removed from a damaged Children’s Home to the nearby Institution – none of them were injured although they were all sick Children.

    Public Utility Services.

  30. Arrangements were quite satisfactory.

Note.

The Emergency slaughtering arrangements were again required in York. Some 60 pigs were involved in one of the incidents – the building in which they were housed being damaged. Six of the pigs were killed outright and none of the carcasses were salvaged as they were blown to pieces. A number of the remainder were slaughtered and the others were rehoused at nearby premises.

The arrangements for dealing with these animals worked very well.

Guildhall.

York

Google Map showing locations bombed in raid of 16th January 1941:

Key to symbols:

High Explosive High Explosive
Incendiary Device Incendiary
Unexploded Bomb Unexploded Bomb (U.X.B)
Casualties Casualties

Editor’s Notes

  1. St. Maurice’s Church on Monkgate was demolished in around 1966. Medieval Churches of York

Raid 5: 2nd January 1941

February 10, 2009

City of York.

Air Raid Damage.

2nd January 1941. (18.30 hours)

Warnings received were:-

No. 391 – 17.54 hrs. Yellow.

18.25 hrs. Purple.

19.25 hrs. Red to 19.40 hrs. White.

Areas affected – Castlegate, Fishergate, Guildhall, Heworth, Monk and Walmgate Wards.

At 18.30 hours enemy aircraft passed over the City and Incendiary bombs were dropped in a line extending from Hull Road to Peaseholme Green causing fires at the following places:-

St. Margaret’s Church. Walmgate, York.

Dwelling House, Landesdowne Terrace,

Bellerby’s Sawmills, Hungate,

Lazenby’s Garage, Hull Road,

Joiner’s Shop, Hull Road,

In no case was the fire serious.

At 19.15 hours more Incendiaries fell in the Heworth District and incidents were reported near a dwelling house in East Parade, and near the York Gas Works Monkbridge and to a house in Heworth. 20 other I.B.’s were detected in various localities on the east side of the City, but no fires were reported Reports were received of machine gunning at points where I.B’s were burning and that flares had been dropped, but these were not confirmed.

The I.B.’s were, in all cases, speedily dealt with, and when the enemy aircraft again passed over the City at approximately 19.40 hours no fires were burning.

Air raid messages “Yellow” and “Purple” were received later the same evening but no incidents occurred.

Copy. 32 Parliament Street,

YORK.

6th January, 1941.

The A.R.P. Controller,

T. C. Benfield Esq.,

The Guildhall,

York.

Dear Sir,

Air Raid, 2nd Jan. 1941.

At about 18.30 hours on Thursday, 2nd Jan. 1941 an enemy aircraft passed over the City and dropped incendiary bombs in a line extending from Hull Road, to Peaseholme Green causing fires as under:-

St. Margaret’s Church. Walmgate, York.

Dwelling House, Landesdowne Terrace,

Dwelling House, Nicholas Terrace,

Bellerby’s Saw Mills, Hungate,

Lazenby’s Factory, Hull Road,

Joiner’s Shop, Hull Road,

These fires were reported by Wardens and police, and fire services attended the outbreaks. In no case did the bombs cause serious fires.

About 19.15 hours the aircraft returned and dropped more incendiary bombs in the Heworth District which were reported as:-

  1. Near house East Parade.

  2. Near Gas Works Monk Bridge.

  3. Near house at Heworth.

The A.F.S. attended the first of these and the other two were put out before the arrival of the fire services. About twenty other incendiary bombs were detected in various localities on the east side of the City and were dealt with by wardens, police and members of the public before fires were started.

There are reports of machine gunning at points where incendiary bombs were burning and where flames were being dropped, but these reports have not yet been confirmed.

This light incendiary attack was speedily dealt with by the wardens, fire services, police and members of the public, no lights being visible at approximately 19.40 hours when aircraft again passed over the City.

It is significant to note that air raid messages “Yellow” and “Purple” were received later the same night indicating the presence of enemy aircraft in the vicinity.

Owing to the very scattered nature of this raid it would be extremely difficult to give a report in full detail, but the wardens in Fishergate, Walmgate, Castlegate, Heworth, Monk and Guildhall Wards were all called upon and did their work well.

In the remaining Wards there was a good turn out of wardens who patrolled their sectors, but I have received no reports of incidents there.

Yours faithfully,

(Signed) W. Bunch.

Chief Warden.

Editor’s Note: I have not found any photographs relating to this raid.

Google Map of locations bombed on 2nd January 1941


Key to symbols:

High Explosive High Explosive
Incendiary Device Incendiary
Unexploded Bomb Unexploded Bomb (U.X.B)
Casualties Casualties

Raid 4: 15th November 1940

February 7, 2009

City of York.

Air Raid Damage.

15th November, 1940. (01.35 hours and 06.50 hours).

Warnings received were:-

No. 303 – 01.29 hrs. Purple to 02.32 hrs. White. (No Yellow or Red).

No. 304 – 03.07 hrs. Purple to 03.15 hrs. White. (No Yellow or Red).

No. 305 – 03.19 hrs. Purple to 03.31 hrs. White. (No Yellow or Red).

No. 306 – 05.23 hrs. Purple to 07.15 hrs. White. (No Yellow or Red).

Areas Affected – Fishergate Ward. Post F.2

Acomb Ward Posts A.3. & A.4

At approximately 01.35 hrs enemy aircraft passed overhead and Incendiary bombs fell in the City.

The first report was received from Post F.2. of an I.B. having fallen in front of No. 41 Hartoft Street. At 03.30 hrs a further report was received of a fire at the L.N.E.R. Power Station Leeman Road, where an Incendiary bomb had penetrated the roof setting fire to ladders and timber stored on the premises. At 07.31 hrs . a report was received of an I.B. falling on the spare ground opposite No. 36 Swann St, Nunnery Lane at 01.45 hours. No material damage caused.

    06.50 hours – 10 H.E. bombs (estimated at 50 k.g.) fell in the City.

Eight of these fell in a line running from west to east of Penty’s Farm at the rear of 17 Askham Lane, Acomb. Six of these bombs exploded and caused craters in the grassland approximately 6ft in diameter and 3ft. deep. The seventh bomb caused a crater in similar ground approximately 10 ft in diameter and 5ft deep. The eighth bomb penetrated soft ground but failed to explode. Very little material damage was done, only damage to glass and slates of nearby houses being reported. A pony and three beasts in a paddock were killed outright, more head of cattle were injured by flying glass.

At 06.57 hours a further incident was reported from Post A.4. of two H.E. bombs in Beckfield Lane. The first bomb fell between two semi-detached houses Nos. 204 and 206 Beckfield Lane demolishing a large part of the end of each house. The occupier Mr. Fenney No. 206, received slight cut to the face and sustained shock. Mrs. Fenney suffered a compound fracture of the arm, burns to the face and shock. The second bomb had fallen in front of No. 210 Beckfield Lane and demolished so much of the outer wall as to render the house unsafe. No casualties were reported from this incident.

—————————-


Copy. 32 Parliament Street,

YORK.

15th Nov. 1940.

The A.R.P. Controller,

The Guildhall,

York.

Dear Sir,

Air Raid Damage – 15.11.40

I beg to send you herewith a report which Sergt. Andrews has prepared.

Incident No. 1.

At 01.35 hours enemy aircraft passed overhead and incendiary bombs fell in the City.

The first report of this occurrence was telephoned to Control H.Q’s from Post F.2. Alma Grove, by Warden Gertie Crouch at 01.52 hours, in reference to a 1 kilo I.B. which had fallen in front of 41 Hartoft Street and burnt itself out on the pavement. The bomb had been covered with sand by Warden Edna Sykes and C. Bannister of the City A.F.S. At 3.30 hours a call was received at the City Fire station asking for an engine to be sent to the L.N.E.R. Power Station, Leeman Rd, where a fire had occurred. On the arrival of the Brigade it was found that a 1 kilo incendiary bomb had penetrated the roof of this building and set fire to ladders and timber stored therein. The fire had got a good hold but was quickly under control and finally extinguished by members of the Regular Fire Brigade.

At 07.31 hours a message was telephoned to Control from Post M.1. Nunnery Lane to the effect that an incendiary bomb had fallen in the spare ground opposite 36 Swann Street at about 01.45 hours and that this bomb had burned itself out without doing any material damage. Mr Hick of 40 Swann Street covered the bomb with sand.

Incident No. 2.

At 06.50 hours aircraft again passed over the City and 10 H.E. bombs (estimated 50 kg) were dropped. Eight of these fell in a line running from west to east at Penty’s Farm, to the rear of 17 Askham Lane. Six of the bombs had exploded and caused craters in the grassland approx. 6 ft. in diameter and 3 ft. in depth. A seventh bomb caused a crater in similar ground approx. 10 ft in diameter and 5ft. in depth. The eighth bomb had again penetrated soft ground but failed to explode. Very little material damage appears to have been done – only damage to glass in nearby housed and displacement of a few slates on farm buildings being the result. A pony and three beasts which were in the paddock at 17 Askham Lane were killed outright, another beast seriously injured and dying, and three more head of cattle wounded by flying splinters. All these casualties were caused by one of the H.E. bombs which fell in the garden at the rear of 17 Askham Lane. A report of this incident was telephoned to Control H.Q. at 06.59 hours which read as follows:-

A3/120 Penty’s Farm Askham Lane, H.E. No casualties, 06.40 hours. Remarks:- Class, probably casualties, crater 3 – 4 ft. across, still smoking, no shrapnel.”

No A.R.P. Services were required for this incident but being advised by Air Raid Warden. Mr Arnott, Butcher of Front Street, slaughtered the injured cattle.

Incident No. 3.

At 06.57 hours the following messages was received at Control H.Q.:-

A4/131 Boroughbridge Road, between Ouseburn Avenue and Boroughbridge Road. Remarks:- 1 ambulance and first aid.”

I was present at control H.Q. when this message was received and at once proceeded to Beckfield Lane where I found that an H.E. bomb had fallen between 204 and 206 Beckfield Lane (semidetached houses) demolishing a large part of the end of each house. The occupier of No. 206 Keith Fenney, suffered slight cuts to the face and sustained shock. Mrs. Fenney received a compound fracture of the arm, burns to the face and shock. A second bomb had fallen in front of No. 210 Beckfield Lane and demolished so much of the outer wall as to render the house unsafe. No casualties were sustained at this site.

In consequence of the above I telephoned the following message to Control H.Q. at 07.08 hours:-

Air Raid Damage A4/131 Beckfield Lane, 2 H.E. 5 Casualties, 1 serious, 1 Ambulance present. Message ends.”

On further inspection of the three houses most badly affected I decided that there was danger of collapse and caused a telephone message to be sent to Control requesting the services of a rescue party to carry out the necessary shoring.

Two Wardens were present on my first arrival and these were set to work ascertaining the full extent of casualties and rendering all possible assistance. A contingent of Police arrived and took charge of the situation and control of traffic near the scene.

Accompanied by the A.R.P. controller (T.C. Benfield Esq.,) I went to Penty’s Farm, Askham Lane, and on arriving there searched the fields at the rear of this farm, while Mr Benfield reported the injury of animals. In Bachelor Hill Field, Warden W. Sherwin pointed out to me a hole in the ground approx. 12” in diameter which I immediately identified as being caused by an unexploded bomb of approx. 50kg. caliber. At 07.56 hours I telephoned the following message to Control:-

A3/121 In field at rear of Askham Lane, 1 unexploded H.E. 07.55 hours. Message ends.”

This messages was supplemented by a written report to the A.R.P. Controller on the prescribed form at 08:30 hours. An officer of the Bomb Disposal Squad from Leeds arrived about 12.00 hours.

All services arrived promptly and worked well together. The situations were well in hand from the time they were first reported.

Yours faithfully,

(Signed) W. Bunch.

W.H.A

Chief Warden.

Photograph of Number 206 Beckfield Lane

No. 206 Beckfield Lane

No. 206 Beckfield Lane

Photograph of No. 204 Beckfield Lane

No. 204 Beckfield Lane

No. 204 Beckfield Lane

Google Map showing areas bombed on 15th November 1940.


Key to symbols:

High Explosive High Explosive
Incendiary Device Incendiary
Unexploded Bomb Unexploded Bomb (U.X.B)
Casualties Casualties

Raid 3: 5th November 1940

February 5, 2009

Copy. 32 Parliament Street,

YORK.

6th Nov. 1940.

The A.R.P. Controller,

(T. C. Benfield Esq.,)

The Guildhall,

York.

Dear Sir,

Air Raid Damage – 5.11.40

Air Raid Message ‘Purple’ was received at 21.46 hours on the 5th inst. Three explosions were heard in or near the City at about 22.10 hours. At 22.20 hours a report was received to the effect that a bomb had fallen within the York Waterworks premises. Investigation on the morning of the 6th inst. disclosed that an H.E. Bomb had fallen close to two reservoirs in the York Waterworks grounds, and had penetrated deeply into the soft ground.

The bomb appeared to have exploded and lifted a quantity of earth and masonry of the reservoir structure, but done little material damage.

The efficiency of the Filter Bed system doe not appear to have been impaired.

Yours faithfully,

(Signed) W. Bunch.

W.H.A

Chief Warden.

City of York.

Air Raid Damage

5th November 1940. (22.20 hours).

Warnings received were:-

No. 272 – 17.40 hours, Yellow to 1802 hrs. White. (No purple or Red).

No 273 – 21.46 hours. Purple to 23.52 hrs. White. (No Yellow or Red).

Area affected – Acomb Ward. Post. A.5.

Three explosions were heard about 22.10 hours and about 22.20. hours a report was received that a bomb had fallen within the York Waterworks Company’s premises. Investigation disclosed that the bomb had fallen close to two reservoirs and had penetrated deeply into soft ground. The bomb appeared to have exploded and lifted a quantity of earth and masonry of the reservoir structure, but done little material damage.

The efficiency of the Filter Bed system does not appear to have been impaired.

Editor’s Note: In the top left quarter of the picture below you can see the reservoirs of the York Waterworks.

Aerial Photograph 1956 Showing York Water Works

Aerial Photograph 1956 Showing York Water Works

Google Map showing location of bombs dropped during Raid of 5th November 1940.

Raid 2: 28th October 1940

January 28, 2009

Air Raid Damage, 28th October 1940(22.27 hours)

Warnings received were -

No. 260 – 20.30 hours Purple to 21.35 hours, white. (no Yellow or Red)

No. 261 – 22.07 hours Purple to 03.43 hours, white. (no Yellow or Red).

Area affected – Bootham Ward. Post B.6. Elmfield Avenue, Malton Road.

At 22.27 hours 4 H.E. Bombs fell in the Elmfield Ave, (Malton Road) area. The first bomb fell in a farm yard of “Thorn Nook” and did some small damage to a Cow Byre, a cow and two calves in the byre were unhurt.

The second bomb struck a barn and detonated on impact wrecking one end of the farm building and doing damage to other buildings round about.

The third bomb fell in the front garden on No. 11 Sefton Avenue doing superficial damage to house property to a distance of approximately 100 yards on either side.

Two men – John T. March (34 years) of 9 Sefton Ave, who was on duty as part-time warden, and Henry Coles of 22 Sefton Avenue, were killed. March received the full effects of the bomb and was killed instantly, his body was badly mutilated. Coles received a fatal wound in the region of the heart and was also instantly killed.

The fourth bomb fell at the rear of 20 Sefton Avenue, on soft ground and did very little material damage.

The conduct of Part-time warden Wm. J. Middlemiss of 30 Elmfield Avenue, in reporting this air raid damage may well be commended; also the conduct of part-time Warden Miss Joan Maw of 41 Elmfield Ave in assisting the evacuation of people in the locality, calls for special comment.

Copy. 32 Parliament Street,

YORK.

29th October, 1940.

Dear Sir,

Air Raid Damage, 28.10.40

At 22.27 hours approximately, 4 H.E. bombs of small calibre fell in the Elmfield Avenue (Malton Road) area.

The first bomb of the stick fell in a farm yard “Thorn Nook” and did some small damage to a cow byre. A cow and two calves in the byre were unhurt.

The second bomb struck a barn and detonated on impact wrecking one end of the farm building and doing damage to other buildings round about.

The third bomb fell in the front garden of No. 11 Sefton Avenue doing superficial damage to houses round about to a distance of approximately 10 yards on either side. Two men were killed by this bomb:-

  1. John Thomas March (34 years) Part-time Air Raid Warden of 9 Sefton Ave, who was on duty.

  2. Henry Coles ( years) of 22 Sefton Ave. York

March received the full effects of the bomb and was killed instantly. His body was badly mutilated. Coles received a fatal wound in the region of the heart and was also killed instantly.

The fourth bomb fell at the rear of 20 Sefton Ave, on soft ground and did very little material damage.

At 22.35 hours following message was received at Control H.Q’s from Muncaster:-

28.10.40 22.35 hours. Post B.6/210.

Elmfield Avenue, Malton Road. H.E.

Send first aid, demolition and ambulance.”

This message was acted upon and services despatched.

At 22.56 hours the following was received at Control H.A. from the Police:-

Sefton Avenue. 2 dead. Extensive damage.”

The bodies were removed to the City Mortuary, Cattle Market, and later March was identified by his father by means of the clothing.

The conduct of Part Time Warden William J. Middlemiss of 30 Elmfield Ave, in reporting this air raid damage may well be commended. Also the conduct of Part Time Warden Miss Joan E. Maw of 41 Elmfield Ave in assisting the evacuation of people in the locality calls for special comment.

Yours faithfully,

(Signed) W. Bunch.

W.H.A

Chief Warden.

The A.R.P. Officer,

Guildhall,

York.

Image from the York City Archives:

Air Raid Damage (Sefton Avenue 28.10.1940)

Air Raid Damage (Sefton Avenue 28.10.1940)

Google map of locations bombed on 28.10.1940:

Raid 1: 11th August 1940

January 23, 2009

CITY of YORK

CIVIL DEFENCE

Air Raid Damage

11th August 1940 (22.21 hours.)

Warnings received around this time were -

No. 88 – 19.11 hours Yellow to 19.32 hours, White. (no purple or red).

No. 89 – 22.30 hours Red to 22.47 White. (no yellow or purple).

No. 90 – 00.00 hours yell to 02.49 hrs White. (no purple or red).

Areas affected – Fishergate Ward, F.1. And 2 Post areas (Cemetery).Acomb Ward. A.3. – Wetherby Road.

At approximately 22.12 hours a bomb fell in the York Cemetery (Park Section) on soft ground adjacent to a tarmac path and 10 yards from the nearest of the graves. A crater approximately 12 feet wide and 6 feet deep was made and much superficial damage done to surrounding house property. A further bomb fell in the Kensall Rise area and a crater was located by the Police and several bomb fragments recovered. Superficial damage was again caused to house property. Two slight casualties were reported from this incident who were injured by flying glass. The bomb is estimated at approximately 112 lbs.

A third bomb was later located in the River Foss between Cliffords Tower and Picadilly, and had apparently not exploded, No damage was reported.

At 22.15 hours a bomb fell in a field between Wetherby Road and Grange Lane, Acomb. Damage was caused to windows, doors and slates of surrounding house property and a small piece of shrapnel fell through the roof of No. 14 Felbrook Ave. No casualties were reported.

CITY of YORK

CIVIL DEFENCE

Air Raid Damage

Air Raid Warning No. 89 – 11th August, 1940.

The following Air Raid Warnings were received -

Red .. .. .. .. .. 22.30 hours.

White .. .. .. .. 22.47 hours.

A short time before the “Red” Warning was received two bombs were dropped, each falling on soft earth and causing a crater approximately 12ft. In diameter and 6ft. deep.

The second bomb fell in Chapel Field, Acomb, and the only damage reported is that a fragment of the casing penetrated the roof of Fellbrook Ave., about a quarter of a mile from where the bomb fell. it is known that a few panes of glass in the area have been broken.

The first bomb fell inside York Cemetery and caused some damage to the Cemetery Grounds, tomb stones, etc… The principal damage was caused in Cemetery Road, where about 80 housed have been damaged in varying degrees from purely superficial damage to quite extensive damage to roofs, window frames, doors, celings and walls.

The damaged property was divided as follows –

Extensive damage to roofs, etc.

(require stripping and reslating.) 24 houses.

Minor roof, repairs. 45 houses.

Damage to glass. 153 houses.

These are the figures at the time this report was made, and they are liable to variation as further reports are received.

There was one serious casualty admintted to hospital, two minor cases treated as out patients, and a few people treated on the spot by a Doctor.

Damage also occurred on Edgeware Road, Heslington Road, and roads in the vicinity, and the water service was damaged in Kensal Rise.

At 23.15 hours a report on similar lines to that above was submitted to the Regional Offices.

Before the Public Warning was received it was known in the Control Centre that bombs had been dropped and the Depots were instructed to stand by for action.

In view of the lack of telephone information and the absence of reports, a Motor Cycle Dispatch Rider was instructed to make a reconnaissance of the area believed to be affected, but unfortunately he had an accident with a vehicle that had been left on the highway with lights extinguished and was put out of action.

A second Dispatch Rider was instructed to to the work and came back at 23.20 hours with full information as to what had happened.

The Estates Manager was informed at 23.25 hours that damage had been done and he immediately came to the Guildhall and from there proceeded to the scene of damage with the Controller, A.R.P. Officer and City Engineer. It was impossible to deal with the houses during the hours of darkness and at 06.00 hours on the 12th inst. the Estates Department workmen commenced first aid repairs.

Many people in the damaged houses were interviewed soon after the bomb had dropped, by the A.R.P. Officer, and it was noticable that the morale of the people was of a very high standard. There was no kind of panic.

At 06.00 hours the next morning the Police took steps to exclude sightseers from the area and this was welcomed by the people who had been affected by the raid.

An Unexploded Bomb was reported to have fallen into the River Foss at a point about 100 yards north of Castle Mills Bridge. The police informed the Military and it was reported to Regional Office, Leeds, at 11.47 on the 12th instant. Public buildings in the vicinity were closed and Managers of private buildings were informed.

At 11.25 Tuesday, 13th inst. Captain Stanson, Chief Engineer, Royal Engineers, reported that the bomb was estimated to be sunk about 30 feet in the river bed and was not a danger.

Picture from the York City Archives

Air Raid Damage in York Cemetery

Air Raid Damage in York Cemetery

Map showing bomb locations:

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York Air Raids in World War II

January 10, 2009

The entries in this blog are a copy of a document in the York City Library which appears to have been prepared at the end of World War II as a record of the activities of the Civil Defence services in the city during the years 1940 – 1945.

The city of York suffered it’s heaviest raid as part of the so-called “Baedeker Raids” on 29th April 1942.


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