Peter Jensen - V1 attacks

Running time
2 min 24 sec
Date made
Department of Veterans' Affairs


Going to a place like England when they've been bashed about and bombed every night and so on and seeing people, how they could live with that.

Thinking now, when you've had no experience of that, if you think, you know, going to bed at night it's strongly possible that a bomb is going to land on you, you couldn't handle that, could you? But they used to do it and laugh about it, you know. They were incredible.

For example, when the rockets were coming over, London was hit with a thousand of those rockets, all with a thousand-pound explosive.

I didn't, walking down the Strand one night, just coming on for dusk, a lot of people, pedestrians, on the footpath and so on and then suddenly, unexpectedly, about a block away there's a 'whoomph'.

A rocket had landed and you could see all the sparks and flame going into the air and, I must tell you though, the government was frightened the citizens would be afraid of these, you know, so they used to say, it would be in the paper, there was an explosion but it was a gas explosion, they used to get them regularly when something had been damaged.

There'd be a gas leak, the gas would build up somewhere then suddenly 'bang'.

Anyway, this happened in the Strand, 'whoosh' this goes up and everybody stops and looks, you know, and someone says 'Oh. Another gas explosion' and everyone says 'Oh yeah. Another gas explosion, of course it is, you know, a big joke and they just kept walking. Incredible, isn't it? How could a city become like that? But they did. It's wonderful.

Was this page helpful?
We can't respond to comments or queries via this form. Please contact us with your query instead.