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The Road to Liberation - 19th April 1941


Good morning everyone.


I hope you all had a nice weekend and the easing of lockdown restrictions is providing some well deserved normal (ish) routines.


We had a great weekend of tours and it was really nice to be out there sharing the island's history. THis week I aim to get back to you all that have messaged or sent in emails.


Have a fantastic day!


Cover photo details here


 

80 years ago today in Jersey 19th April 1941


Today would be the 293rd day of the Islands Occupation with 1,481 days remaining.



23-year-old RAF Pilot Robert Stirling (87 Squadron) RAF whose Hurricane Mk1 crashed close to Guernsey, is brought to Jersey and taken to the Ontario hotel while awaiting transference to a prison camp in France and then onward to Stalag IX Camp.


During the early hours of the 12th of April, he was chasing Luftwaffe Bombers over the English Channel and developed a fuel issue. Mistaking the Islands as the south of England he bailed out and landed on the small Channel Island Lihou. Without knowing he crossed a minefield and then via a causeway at low tide to Guernsey. At 1am he arrived at the house of Tom and Myra Brouard who informed him of the situation and sheltered him overnight. Robert Sterling called the police and arranged to hand himself in at the end of the Curfew the following morning.


Robert survives the war passing away on the 4th December 1987

 

Further afield this day 80 years ago

19th April 1941


The commonwealth graves commission record 693 deaths this day 80 years ago, the average age was 35.


Above 80 years ago today aNurse clear debris from one of the wards at St Peter's Hospital East London, The hospital was hit by German Bombs in the past two days.


Atlantic

H.M. Armed Merchant Cruiser Bulolo intercepted the French Ship Fort de France 500 miles W. of the Canaries on the 19th April and is sending her into Gibralta under armed guard.

On the 19th April, H.M.S. Plover laid 120 mines in St. George's Channel


 

Book Recommendation


The April book recommendation is "Six Days." The story centres around the paratroopers of the 507th Parachute Infantry Regiment of the 82nd Airborne Division and the brave citizens of the quiet French hamlet. The battle of Grainges maybe not be known as some of the invasion stories but this beautifully illustrated novel captures the true story.


 


Exploring bunkers Always get permission from the owner Take a torch, a spare and one more for luck Don't go alone & tell someone where you will be and for how long You will get dirty as most are often full of rubbish and may have been used as a public toilet Anything you find still belongs to the person that owns the property Unexploded ordnance is still found in Jersey if you see or find anything that looks like ordnance please call the bomb disposal officer on 01534 612 61


Sources of Information German Documents are housed at The National Archived in Washington or Archive in Kew UK T-78 Roll 317: OKH Coastal and Channel Defenses Files 1940-44 -

T-78 Roll 318: OKH Coastal and Channel Defenses Files 1941-43

T-315 Roll 1639: 216th Security Division War Diary

(Kriegstagebuch), Belgium, France & Russia 1939-42 

T-1022 Roll 2423: Various War Diaries (Kriegstagebucher), Channel Islands 1941-44

Atlantic Wall Coastal Battery Lists: Germany, Netherlands, Belgium, & France 1944-45 

T-312 Roll 1559: 7th Army War Diary (Kriegstagebuch), France 1941-43 & T-312 Roll 1558

T-315 Roll 1643: 216th Security Division War Diary

(Kriegstagebuch), Belgium, France & Russia 1939-41 

T-311 Roll 16: Army Group D War Diary (Kriegstagebuch), Western Front Aug-Nov 1944  Operation Green Arrow - Occupation of the Channel Islands MOD 584 Allied Technical Intelligence Reports 1942-45 German Preparations for Invasion of the United Kingdom 1941-42 B-833, 319th Infantry Division (1941-45) German Seacoast Defenses, European Theatre - prepared by the Artillery Evaluation Board

BBC News & Archives

The Britannica Jersey Occupied by Michael Ginns - ISBN 978-1-905095-29-2 Operation Nestegg Plans Operation Hardtack Plans Operation Basalt Plans RAF Photos care of The National Collection of Aerial Photography

The National Archive of Newspapers Bundesarchiv - Multiple Photos - and Files A Map of slave labour camps. Kindly Provided by Emilio Pérez Photo's and information provided by fans Onsite visits & internet research

Cabinet Papers Second World War memoranda (cab 661- cab 665) After the Battle Multiple Magazines

The Bomber Command War Diaries: An Operational Reference Book, 1939-1945 Jersey Heritage Archive

CIOS Archive & Publications (become a member here)

The Commonwealth War Graves Commission

American Battle Monuments Commission

If we have used any photos or information which you believe to posted without permission, please contact us at info@jerseywartours.com and we will resolve asap.


Jersey War Tours is Registered with the Jersey Financial Services Commission as a Non-Profit Organisation - NPO1207

Jargon Help

Widerstandsnest (WN) = Resistance Nest (RN) A small pocket of resistance would be made up of small groups of up to 10 men with light weapons. They would man Anti-tank weapons, an observation post or a field gun. Stützpunkt St.P = Strongpoint (STP) The next level up from an RN and consisted of several RN's. STP areas would have a combination of weapons and different branches of the military used. Examples of this can be found with Strongpoint Greve de Lecq and Strongpoint Corbiere Einsatzstellung = Operational Position or Action Post Smaller MG type position generally it was only maned during an alert Feldwache = Field Watch Early resistance nest

Jägerstand

Jäger Casemate was a special design and name for bunkers designed to hold a 10.5cm field gun

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