Bombing raid brought to life with plane find

Last week’s nostalgia story on the World War Two bombing raids over Louth was brought to life, when a reader brought in a piece of history.

The story ‘Bombing raids brought back to life’ came about when reader June Hammond showed us a newspaper clipping from 1940, telling the story of how two German bombers were shot down over South Cockerington.

But it all became real when Robert Laughton, who saw the story, brought in a piece of one of those very planes, a bottom end bearing from a Junkers Ju 88, in mint condition.

It is inscribed with RAF Manby, whose crew shot it down, and the date of December 22, 1940.

Robert picked up the piece, measuring just a few inches across, from a local dealer and it sits proudly on the sideboard in his Louth home.

He is a keen collector of such historical artefacts.

“I saw the story and thought this would be of interest, it’s a bottom end bearing from one of those very planes,” he explained.

“You can see the RAF Manby inscription on it, it was one of the only aircraft they managed to shoot down from Manby.”

Mrs Hammond, whose story sparked Robert into action, told how she was just six years old at the time of the raid, and how she was forced to duck for cover under the bridge into Priory Road during one of the raids.

According to reports from the time, a raid in Louth just three weeks earlier caused a huge blaze, gutting properties.

The report states told how incendiary bombs were dropped on the malt kiln in Newbridge Hill, causing a fire that ‘could be seen for miles around’ and took over 100 firefighters to be brought under control.

And two months later eight people lost their lives and 11 people were injured when a single plane flew over Louth at low altitude, flattening parts of the Railway Station, Ramsgate and Eastgate.

According to statistics, a total of 15 people were killed during the numerous bombing raids on Louth during the blitz.

What do you remember of the World War Two raids? Do you have a piece of history you’d like to share?

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