On this day 21 August, Battle Of Britain

Drone_pilot

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Battle of Britain Campaign Diary

Weather: Cloudy, occasional rain.
Day: Small raids on airfields in the east and south.
Night: Slight activity including Scotland.

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Enemy action by day
Enemy activity was on a widespread scale and operations were carried out in most instances by single aircraft.

During the period some 200 raids of which one or two plus aircraft were plotted across our East and South Coasts. These raids made short runs inland, seldom penetrating more than 20 miles. Bombs were dropped and reports indicate the main objective of these raids was aerodromes in East Anglia and along the South Coast. The only raid greater than two plus plotted during this period was a raid of six plus which approached a convoy south of the Isle of Wight. A number of these raids were intercepted by our fighters and casualties were inflicted with the loss of one Hurricane (pilot safe) to ourselves.

The main areas of activity were East Anglia and along the South Coast between Dungeness and the Isle of Wight. The Cornish Coast was also visited by several raids and aerodromes were attacked.

Of the thirteen certain casualties inflicted, seven were in the eastern areas between Harwich and Scarborough, four were off the South Coast between the Isle of Wight and Beachy Head and two were off the North Cornish Coast in the St Eval area.

By night
Enemy activity was extremely slight. Four raids were plotted crossing the Sussex coast penetrating to Northolt, South London, Reigate, Maidstone and Weybridge. Further enemy raids, mostly of single aircraft, were plotted off Harwich, Aberdeen, the Humber, Firth of Forth and near Drem.

Small-scale minelaying was suspected from Kinnaird's Head to St Abb's Head, Humber to Yarmouth and Dungeness to Selsey Bill.


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Statistics
Fighter Command Serviceable Aircraft as at 0900 hours, 21st August 1940
Blenheim - 58
Spitire - 239
Hurricane - 400
Defiant - 25
Gladiator - 7
Total - 729
Casualties:

Enemy Losses
By Fighters
Destroyed...........Probable...........Damaged
1 He111..............1 Do215............1 Do17
7 Ju88................1 Ju88...............1 He111
3 Do17
2 Do215


By Anti-Aircraft
Destroyed Probable Damaged

- - -

Own:
1 Hurricane - pilot safe.
Patrols:
Own
181 patrols despatched involving 620 aircraft.

Enemy
It is estimated that about 150 enemy aircraft operated over Great Britain (120 during daylight).

Balloons:
Flying 1460. Casualties 118 (84 repairable, 30 written off and 4 by enemy action).

Aerodromes:
Abbotsinch, Acklington, West Hartlepool, Hawkinge, Lympne and Exeter unserviceable by night.

Organisation:
No 302 Squadron (Polish) operational by day at Leconfield.
No 264 Squadron has moved from Kirton to Hornchurch.
No 266 Squadron has moved from Hornchurch to Wittering.
Air Intelligence Reports
Nil.

Home Security Reports
Date: 21st August 1940

General Summary
There have been a large number of raids by small numbers of enemy aircraft, chiefly in the South and Easter districts. The objectives appear to have aerodromes but indiscriminate bombing and machine-gunning of open towns was apparent.

Detailed Summary
The following aerodromes were bombed, resulting ion little damage to report: Horsham St Faith, Elton, Watton, Catfoss, Eastleigh, West Malling, Pulham, Exeter and Bircham Newton where there were several casualties. Two hangars at St Eval Aerodrome were set on fire and at Binbrook and Stormy Down aerodromes there was a certain amount of damage to buildings.
Presumably an attempt was made to bomb Brooklands Aerodrome, Weybridge, but only damage to the Southern Railway line was reported, resulting in stoppage of all traffic.
HMS 'Royal Arthur', Ingoldmells, Royal Naval Training Station, was bombed resulting in severe damage.
HE fell at Canterbury demolishing seven houses and at Hastings a certain amount of damage was caused to houses and water mains.
At Falmouth, a drifter was sunk and two others damaged by HE and IB.
HE were dropped south of Brentwood station causing obstruction to the line.
Bournemouth and Poole were attacked, which resulted in road blockages and superficial damage.
The Scilly Isles were bombed and machine-gunned and damage was caused to a wireless station.
HE fell in Leicester, demolishing seven houses and damaging sixteen others.
HE fell in Southwold, wrecking three houses.
Bombs were dropped near Thorneycroft's Works, Woolston, Southampton. A dredger was sunk clear of the fairway and water mains fractured.

Casualties on Ground by Enemy Action:
To RAF Personnel - 2 killed, 40 injured.
To others - 4 killed, 178 injured.

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