V-1s (Doodle bugs)v1.jpg (3483 bytes)

V-1s were flying missiles that had enough power to fly over the Channel and were capable of destroying 2 to 3 houses.They made a droning noise and as soon as the droning noise stopped people had 15 seconds to escape from the powerful blast that followed. The V-1s, which were more commonly known as "Doodle bugs or "Buzz bombs", were fired from France when it was taken over by Hitler. They were launched during 1944. About 8,000 were launched at Britain, and over 2,000 of them hit London. Over 6,000 Londoners were killed and about 500,000 homes were destroyed. 2,500 anti-aircraft guns were moved to the south coast to shoot down the deadly V-1s before they reached London. Many more evacuees were moved out of London due to these terrifying bombs.

v2.jpg (7251 bytes) V-2s

As if the V-1s weren't enough, on the 8th September 1944 the first even more destructive "V-2" rocket was launched on Chiswick near London. It had a mighty double bang, and killed three people. The terrifying V-2s proved even more destructive than the V-1s. They flew very fast and high up in the air; much too high to be shot down by the anti-aircraft guns of fighter aircraft. Luckily less of them were launched than the V-1s. 500 hit London, killing 2,855 civilians. Many R.A.F. bombers launched missions to find and destroy the V-2 launch bases.

The Allied invasion of Normandy in 1944 brought about the destruction of a V-1 and V-2 launching site in the Cherbourg Peninsula. This meant that South Wales did not become a target for doodle bugs and V-2 rockets.

V.E. Day