Heavy attack on London

Fire fighting in Southwark on the night of 16th/17th April 1941.

On the [16th/17th] one of the heaviest attacks was made on London since the war began. Bombing commenced shortly after 2100 and lasted until nearly dawn.

Some sixty-six boroughs were affected, the main bombing being on central and southern London. Damage in the docks area was comparatively light and so far there is little damage to key points to record. In addition to H.E. and incendiary bombs a large number of parachute mines were dropped and great damage was done to private property by fire and blast.

Among the public buildings damaged were St. Pauls Cathedral, the Houses of Parliament, the Admiralty, the Law Courts and the National Gallery. Many roads were blocked and the railway systems were hit in nineteen places. There were a large number of fires, the most serious being at L.N.E.R Goods Yard in Lisson Grove. Other serious fires were caused at Selfridges, Bessborough Gardens, Westminster, and the Kidbrooke R.A.F. Stores Depot. Although many fires were burning at daybreak, the situation was considered to be in hand.

From the Home Security Situation Report for the week , TNA CAB 66/16/10.

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