Belfast Blitz

The Belfast Blitz was the name given to a series of devastating aerial attacks on Northern Ireland's capital by the German Luftwaffe in April and May 1941.

Bombs on Belfast

The Belfast Blitz was a series of 4 Luftwaffe air raids over the city of Belfast, Co. Antrim in April and May 1941. Luftwaffe pilots had identified strategic targets across the Northern Ireland capital.

These reconnaissance flights had taken place as early as November 1940. As well as industrial and military targets, residential areas suffered. The effects of the devastation caused by German bombs would last for many years to come.

Featured image for Belfast Blitz: A city unprepared for war

Belfast Blitz: A city unprepared for war

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7th March 2018

In 1941, the city of Belfast remained unprepared for the arrival of war to its doorstep. On 7th April 1941, the Luftwaffe arrived and everything changed.

Featured image for Belfast Blitz: A viable Luftwaffe target

Belfast Blitz: A viable Luftwaffe target

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30th November 2017

On 30th November 1940, a German plane flew a solo reconnaissance flight over Belfast, Co. Antrim proving the city to be an under-defended Luftwaffe target.

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Belfast Blitz: Sheila the Elephant

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7th March 2018

In 1941, as the Belfast Blitz unfolded, a remarkable story was taking place at Belfast Zoo. This is the story of Sheila the Elephant and her keeper Denise.

The Belfast Blitz of 1941

On 7th April 1941, the first Nazi Luftwaffe bombs fell on Belfast. They ravaged the shipyards and docks but much worse was to come later that month.

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Belfast Blitz: The Docks Raid

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7th March 2018

The Belfast Blitz was the name given to a series of Luftwaffe raids on Northern Ireland in 1941. The Docks Raid came on the night of 7th-8th April 1941.

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Belfast Blitz: The Easter Raid

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7th March 2018

On 15th-16th April 1941, Belfast, Co. Antrim came under ferocious attack from the Luftwaffe as the city endured The Easter Raid of the Belfast Blitz.

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Belfast Blitz: The Fire Raid

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5th March 2018

On the night of 4th-5th May 1941, Luftwaffe bombers wreaked havoc across much of north, east, and central Belfast in what became known as The Fire Raid.

Devastation across the City

Featured image for Belfast Blitz: Bombs on Belfast City Centre

Belfast Blitz: Bombs on Belfast City Centre

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6th February 2019

In April and May 1941, Luftwaffe bombs on Belfast City Centre tore the heart out of the industrial city in what would become known as the Belfast Blitz.

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Belfast Blitz: Bombs on North Belfast

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6th February 2019

In the Belfast Blitz raids of 1941, Luftwaffe bombs on North Belfast caused widespread devastation and loss of life among both Protestants and Catholics.

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Belfast Blitz: Bombs on East Belfast

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6th February 2019

Luftwaffe bombs on East Belfast fell on the industrial heart of the city and surrounding residential areas during the Belfast Blitz of April and May 1941.

Researching the Belfast Blitz

The Aftermath

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Belfast Blitz: The German Reaction

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12th August 2019

The German reaction to the Belfast Blitz was one of great joy among the Luftwaffe pilots but Nazi officials were careful not to provoke American military.

Recommended Reading

Featured image for A Nurse in the Belfast Blitz : The Diary of Emma Duffin 1939-42

A Nurse in the Belfast Blitz : The Diary of Emma Duffin 1939-42

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9th April 2020

Emma Duffin was a nurse who saw service in both World Wars and wrote in great detail in journals during this time. This is her account of wartime Belfast.

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Bombs on Belfast: The Blitz 1941

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10th April 2020

'Bombs on Belfast: The Blitz 1941' presents a collection of photographs from the Belfast Telegraph archives offering an insight into city life in 1941.

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Post 381

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6th April 2020

'Post 381' is the Second World War memoirs of James Doherty, a volunteer Air Raid Warden in North Belfast during the Belfast Blitz of April and May 1941.

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The Belfast Blitz: The City In The War Years

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7th April 2020

'The Belfast Blitz: The City In The War Years' is the most comprehensive work on the period of the attacks during the Belfast Blitz of April and May 1941.

Featured image for The Belfast Blitz: The People’s Story

The Belfast Blitz: The People’s Story

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8th April 2020

Stephen Douds uses diaries, memoirs, newspapers, and eyewitness accounts to retell the story 'The Belfast Blitz: The People's Story' of the events of 1941.