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26th January 2023

The Bombing of London 1940-41

Guild Member John Conen has taken a break from beer writing to complete this story of the London Blitz of 1940-41 which focusses on the enormous human cost and material destruction that occurred. But he does not neglect the wartime pub and brewing scene in London!

John Conen has written a new history of the London Blitz, focussing on the enormous human cost and material destruction that occurred.

This is the story of the London Blitz of 1940-41 and is a combination of social and military history of this time. The title emphasises bombing over blitz as the word ‘Blitz’ has now taken on a much more general meaning associated with Britain’s wartime spirit. This book describes how the Blitz progressed from the daylight attacks of the summer of 1940 through to the major raids of the spring of 1941, and looks at exactly what happened in the metropolis in those years. During the course of these attacks thousands of bombs fell on London, many triggering an ‘incident’, a bland word that on hundreds of occasions effectively resulted in a disaster which in peacetime would have made national headlines.

A chronology of the London Blitz forms the centrepiece of this account, exploring the progress of the aerial attack, what happened in each raid, the human cost and material destruction, the buildings destroyed or damaged and the people killed and injured. These major bombing incidents and bomb-related events have remained little-known since the War. The Civilian War Dead Roll of Honour and the London Gazette – sources of which only limited use has been previously made – are used to investigate these events. The damage to London’s buildings has also seldom been fully explored.

John Conen grew up in the north-east London suburb of Chingford, and has a long-standing interest in London history and in particular the ordeal of World War 2. He has written several books including The Little Blitz, the story of the last attack on London by piloted aircraft in 1944.

About the book he says: “Did the Luftwaffe really set out to destroy London? The truth was that the attacks, although noisy and frightening, destructive and lethal, weren’t very effective from a military point of view, and civilian resilience was tested but rarely brought close to breaking point. The human cost and material destruction was enormous and I’ve attempted to focus on this.”

RELEASE DATE: 28th January 2023
ISBN: 9781803134871 Price: £13.99

For author interviews, review or competition copies, articles, photos or extracts, please contact Jonathan White Tel: 0116 279 1968 Email: