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Thread: V1 (flying bomb) raid reports - radar, Royal Observer Corps etc - do they exist?

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    Default V1 (flying bomb) raid reports - radar, Royal Observer Corps etc - do they exist?

    I have plotted the crash location (by grid reference) of every one of the 7500+ flying bombs, that were launched at the UK. I have also plotted the location of every single launch site - in France, Belgium, Holland, Germany etc.

    What I'd like to do now, is work out where every one of the flying bombs was launched from - and draw 7500+ lines from the launch site, to the crash site.

    Big problem, though. The German war diaries for each battery of Flak 155 (W) were lost/destroyed in 1945.

    Every single V1 that was picked up, by British radar, was assigned a raid number. Royal Observer Corps personnel also passed along details of height, speed, heading etc - and the 11 Group controllers passed this information on to waiting fighter pilots, if any doodle-bugs made it through the gun belt. I was hoping to use this information, to work backwards, and show where each flying bomb emanated from.

    But, having spoken to resident forum experts, I understand that all that lovely radar tracking information is no longer in existence.

    So, does anyone know if the ROC tracking reports survive? Alternatively, has anyone come across files that show the heading/course for V1s....? I've come across a lovely map, in various publications, which shows that someone (just after the War ended), had the info to make a V1 tracking diagram. But I simply can't find the information, today.

    I'd really appreciate any help or suggestions.

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    The map on http://www.pillbox.org.uk/blog/216685/ should give you an idea on what I am trying to achieve.....

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    Pete, RV Jones' book "Most Secret War" had a photo of a Map showing impact sites. I dont know if you already seen that or if its of use to you. and apparently sourced from Flak 155 (W) Regiment (source)

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    Pete,
    Having been closely involved with UKWMO (the ROC's successor) at one stage I was interested in this one!
    Wiki says, of the ROC closure/stand-down "Arrangements were made with the Ministry of Defence and RAF Historical Branch to archive ROC files, documents and historical memorabilia at various locations across the country."
    Might be another avenue of investigation?
    HTH
    Peter Davies
    Meteorology is a science; good meteorology is an art!
    We might not know - but we might know who does!

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    Hello Pete,
    Interesting project. Did you find any discrepancies in the widely-published plots that were compiled during the war? The original large scale map is I believe still at IWM Duxford where it was once on public display. It has been reproduced in several books and, having seen the original and the small version used in books, I realise it would be worthwhile reconciling the two in case there are compromises in the smaller version.
    If you have found discrepancies, then I am sure it would be of interest to many people to highlight them.
    Regards,
    Bruce
    http://www.filephotoservice.co.uk/
    RESEARCH AT THE NATIONAL ARCHIVES & OTHER UK INSTITUTIONS

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    Pete,
    As you say, these sorts of military missiles can easily be put off course by the winds in their flight paths. The Launch Sites would, I assume, have received - from the German Wetterdienst - some quite detailed forecasts of wind speed/direction and temperatures in the flight path. Some of this documentation may have survived in the Wetterdienst archives - although, by this time in WW2, the famed German record keeping and accuracy was under some extreme pressure! But Wetterdienst Archives have, in the past, been very helpful to the Met Team! Give 'em a try if all else fails!
    HTH
    Peter Davies
    Meteorology is a science; good meteorology is an art!
    We might not know - but we might know who does!

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    Hello again Pete,
    Still not answering your direct question, but have you seen the BC4 records at The National Archives (BC = Bomb Census)? The different aspects of the Bomb Census are mostly in the HO range of files: HO192, reports on raids;193, hand annotated maps; 198, forms; 202 & 203, summaries;etc. These files start in 1940 and carry on (getting more refined) to the end of the war. Also, The War Damage Commision has files in IR37. These are probably useful in your context only for cross-reference purposes.
    One of our members has a good association with the Observer Corps. If you like, I will contact him off-board.

    Sorry if I am telling you what you already know, hope it is of some help.

    Regards,
    Bruce
    http://www.filephotoservice.co.uk/
    RESEARCH AT THE NATIONAL ARCHIVES & OTHER UK INSTITUTIONS

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    Thank you for all replies, so far.

    So far, the only ROC archive I have found is that in the Hampshire Records Office - and is nearly all Hampshire related. I am following up on another lead - but don't have a good feeling. i would certainly welcome ANY further leads.

    The 155 (W) map is not accurate - and, in fact, is mostly based on information supplied by British agents - see Juan Pujol and the Double Cross (XX) committee.

    I admit I have never cross-referenced the 'where-the-bombs-fell' maps, with my data. But I have cross-referenced my data - sourced from BC4 (great hand drawn maps and photos etc), plus dedicated flying bomb files from the Air Ministry and Home Office etc - with files from the London Fire Brigade and civil defence records in County Records Offices. I have to say, all appear to be very accurate and tally, totally. The only dispute is in the number of casualties. But that's to be expected....

    That said, it is very easy to overlay any map, especially in Google Earth. I will follow your suggestion and see if there are any discrepancies. I will try and post some pics in a few days.

    I have also done the same with the V2s, as I have done for the flying bombs - plotted every one. There is a fabulous website, on V2s (v2rocket.com), but I seem to have quite a few 'extra' V2s landing on the UK than that website has. I believe this is down to 'double plotting' in a few cases - namely V2s falling in the Thames being reported by authorities in Kent and also in Essex.

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    Pete, I think Diver Combat Records did include Vectors for intercepted V1s. Possibly of some help. Also, you can try records of control stations, especially Biggin Hill, which was responsible for verification.
    Franek

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