The Battle of Britain, or the Blitz, was an intense bombing campaign in England in World War II by the German air force, the Luftwaffe.
The Blitz took its name from the German word Blitzkrieg, meaning ‘Lightning War’.
Prior to the attacks on England, the German air force had spent a month attempting to decimate the British air force.
Failure to achieve this objective had resulted in the Blitz, designed to crush the morale of the British people.
Hundreds of civilians were killed and many more injured in the initial attack on London which took place on 7 September 1940.
The first raids were concentrated on the heavily populated East End, as about 300 bomber planes attacked the city over a 90 minute period.
There were many more attacks over cities and towns in England in the ensuing months.
One of the largest single raids occurred on 29 December 1940, and killed almost 3000 civilians.
In all, the Blitz lasted for over 8 months, killed about 43,000 civilians and destroyed over one million homes.
During the Blitz, the Luftwaffe lost most of its experienced aircrew and hundreds of aircraft.
By drawing the focus away from the British air force, it gave the RAF time to regroup and rebuild.
Despite the Luftwaffe’s best attempts, the British people never lost their morale or their fighting spirit.