On this day in Yorkshire 1942

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Britain's Big Planes: Bomb Loads up by 400 per cent

Britain’s biggest bombers are today carrying about four times the weight of bombs carried by the heaviest bombers with which we started the war.

Mr. Ben Smith, M P., Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Aircraft Production, disclosed this in a broadcast in the North American service early to-day.

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Damaged aircraft that limped home, mainly from raids, had been repaired literally by the tens of thousands.

“We have salvaged aircraft that have crashed on tops of hills, on little islands, off the coast, and in the sea,” said Mr, Smith.

“It is necessary to maintain great forces of aircraft in Britain, but we export huge numbers and, in particular, a far greater number than we import. For example, in the first half of 1942. we exported to Russia, the Middle East and elsewhere well over three times as many aircraft as we imported.”

Urgent modifications were sometimes necessary, “A sudden operational requirement arose towards the end of July. Telegraphic instructions were sent to 20 or 30 factories asking them to switch their main efforts to the item involved and give up all holidays to get out 600 sets by the end of the month. When August 31 arrived we bad 715 sets.”

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Bombers had been built, no matter what the risk. Workers turned up at a factory one morning to find a heavy delayed-action bomb between two shops where a vitally urgent job was being rushed.

It was “business as usual“ a few yards from the bomb, and the risk was cheerfully undertaken.

In the important radio war, the great structures of British radio location and modern radio communications towered far above the flatteringly imitative achievements of the enemy.

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