Eyewitnesses

Hertfordshire Archives & Local Studies

On 30 August the people of Hertfordshire witnessed the first aerial battle over the county when a Messerschmitt crashed at Kimpton, following a raid on Luton airport and the Vauxhall works. On same day a Heinkel was shot down at Hunsdon after an attack on Radlett airfield.  After these incidents, activity over the county was limited to solitary raids at night, or occasionally the machine gunning of a street.

Newspaper report following two German crashes on 30 August 1940
HALS (ref Herts Mercury 6 Sep 1940)
Geoffrey Jarvis from Harpenden was on ARP duty on 30 August. In his diary, he noted that that a British fighter crashed on West Common though it is not mentioned in any official records. The next day, he went with his girlfriend to see the wreck of the Messerschmitt near Kimpton.
Diary of Geoffrey Jarvis, 1940 (ref HALS DE/X779)
Thrilling experiences over the Lea Valley
HALS (Hertfordshire Mercury 6 Sep 1940)
Account of a ‘dogfight’ over Panshanger, near Hertford, witnessed by 8 year old John Gage on 30 August 1940
HALS (ref DE/Rv/F8)
A German Messerschmitt 109 which found its way to Watford
HALS (ref WatGrv 0685-00-51)
Aviation crashes over Herts between July and October 1940
HALS
This page was added on 09/07/2020.

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