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At First Sight
Attack on Flying Bomb (V1) Storage Caves St Leu D'Esserent
- 7th July 1944

Area of the Flying Bomb Storage Depot. This is the target area before the attack by aircraft of Bomber Command on the night of 7th July 1944.

Crown copyright

The same area after the attack. Insert A shows the large subsidence of earth above the tunnel entrance to the storage caves. Craters can be seen over the tunnel area and a great deal of earth has collapsed into the tunnel entrance.

 

 

Closer scrutiny of the two photographs suggests that 'TOP' in chinagraph does not indicate North but probably South in view of shadows falling on roadsides and in the craters. It would also appear that there were, in fact, two entrances to the caves, one marked ‘B’ and the other in a wooded area above area ‘A’. Both have obviously been completely closed. All but one of the buildings in the complex were destroyed and the angle of various trees and depth of craters in the central area of the photograph suggests that considerably more of the cave labyrinth was penetrated than is suggested by the caption.

Eight Mosquitoes of 627 Squadron carried out the visual marking of this target and in view of its importance seven other Mosquitoes marked a spoof target some miles away at precisely the same time


Copyright 1943-2012 627 Squadron in Retirement or as credited