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21 June 2014

20th June 1944: doodle-bugs, one right overhead

20th Tues. Weather same as yesterday. From 7.40 to 7.50 a.m. one machine - the R.A.F. call them doodle-bugs landed with a loud bang a little east of here; Southfields I am told. 3.5 p.m. - 3.17 p.m. one machine right overhead which came down so I hear in Durham Road; it would be just about there, no it was at the Coombe Lane end of Copse Hill.* 6.10 to 6.35 p.m. two down, some way to the S.E. From 9.28 to 9.43 p.m. one down S.E. From 10.35 to 11.17 p.m. one over S. London

*Holland Avenue.   (That's Fred's own asterisk and footnote.)

Link to BBC news and very informative video

Note: 2,419 doodlebugs came down on London. Small propellers on the front went round a set number of times, calculating distance flown, and then dived (cutting off remaining fuel supply, thus making it sound as if the engine had run out of fuel). UK information deliberately 'leaked' back to Germany encouraged them to think the bombs were over-flying London, and thus to shorten range, making for more falling in open countryside - but also more deaths in Kent and Sussex.

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