On this day: Oxford Street during the Blitz

The damaged Peter Robinson department store at Oxford Circus, following a German air raid on London, September 1940. Second World War Two

Oxford Street, London’s famous shopping boulevard, suffered heavy damage from German bombing during the Second World War.

On the night of 17-18 September, 1940, some of London’s best-known establishments were hit.

This photograph shows the destroyed façade of the Peter Robinson department store at Oxford Circus. The business was founded in 1833.

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On this day: anti-invasion training in England

Troops 8th Battalion The Royal Lincolnshire Regiment abandon their bicycles and advance along a country lane anti-invasion exercises Weybourne in Norfolk 23 July 1941. Second Wo

In this image, dated the 23rd of July, 1941, troops of the 8th Battalion, The Royal Lincolnshire Regiment, abandon bicycles to advance along a country lane in Weybourne, Norfolk, England.

The exercise, taking place two years into the Second World War, was part of anti-invasion training.

Weybourne was considered to be at serious risk of invasion during the war, and the area was prepared accordingly, including the laying of mines along the coast.

On this day: Dambusters in Britain

617_Squadron_(dambusters)_at_Scampton_Lincolnshire_22_July_1943_TR1126All were killed when their Lancaster was shot down on the night of 15 - 16 September 1943 during the raid on D

Source

This photograph is dated the 22nd of July, 1943, and shows members of Britain’s Royal Air Force  617 Squadron “dam busters” at Scampton, Lincolnshire.

All of the men in the picture were killed a few weeks later, when they were shot down during the raid on the Dortmund-Ems Canal in September.

Their names are:

  • Flight Sergeant J H Payne, gunner
  • Pilot Officer T W Johnson, engineer
  • Sergeant W E Hornby
  • Sergeant L G Mieyette, wireless operator
  • Pilot Officer C H Coles, bomb-aimer
  • Flying Officer J A Rodger, navigator
  • Flight Lieutenant W H S Wilson

On this day: Reconstruction in London

EPSON scanner image

This image, taken on the 14th of July, 1955, shows reconstruction in the City of London. The scaffolding surrounds what was left of the church of All Hallows-by-the-Tower after extensive German bombing during the Second World War.

The Tower of London can be seen in the background.

The destruction was particularly devastating as a church had stood on the site since the year 675.

Women’s London: A Tour Guide to Great Lives by Rachel Kolsky

Women's London A Tour Guide to Great Lives by Rachel Kolsky

Women’s London is the only guidebook that focuses on the women who have shaped London through the centuries and the legacy they have left behind. This new book provides the perfect opportunity to explore sights, statues, plaques and buildings associated with famous and some not so famous women who have left their mark on London’s heritage, culture and society. Their stories include scientists and suffragettes, reformers and royals, military and medical pioneers, authors and artists, fashion and female firsts … and more. The author, a popular London tour guide and lecturer, specialises in women’s history and has provided a series of original self-guided walking tours taking you to historic areas where important women lived, worked and are commemorated. Illustrated with new full-colour photography and specially commissioned maps, Women’s London will inspire visitors and Londoners alike to discover how much London owes to women.

Women’s London: A Tour Guide to Great Lives by Rachel Kolsky

It’s always nice to have historical nonfiction that tells the stories of women. For centuries the world in general has perpetuated the myth that men were the only people who ever achieved anything, which of course is incorrect.

Women’s London gives you information about some of history’s most famous women, but it also tells you some stories about the lesser-known women in the history of the city. For example, we learn of London’s first female cab driver (women were barred from the profession until 1977!).

While interesting, the copy of the book I read had some very problematic formatting. Even big-name guidebook companies like Lonely Planet struggle to make their ebooks accessible, so that’s no surprise.

An interesting book, with some layout issues that will confuse you.

 

Review copy provided by NetGalley.