Mexborough & Swinton Times – Saturday 13 January 1940
Nazi Air Force’s Busy Day
Planes Over British Coast
Soon Driven Off : No Bombs Dropped
Italian Volunteers In Finland ?
There was considerable aerial activity yesterday. German raiders crossed the English coast at various points from Scotland to the Thames Estuary, but all were driven off by R.A.F. ‘planes and anti-aircraft batteries. No bombs were dropped on the coast, and no air raid sirens were sounded.
A statement issued by the Air Ministry yesterday afternoon said in addition to a raid at Newcastle-on-Tyne, enemy aircraft appeared off the Firth of Forth and the estuaries of the Humber and the Thames. They were driven off by anti-aircraft fire and fighter patrols. Off the Norfolk coast enemy aircraft made a bombing attack on a merchant vessel. They were intercepted and engaged by our fighter aircraft.
Three ‘planes were believed to have taken part in the North East Coast raid. At a number of towns many people watched shells bursting, and on the North-East Coast a house was slightly damaged by shell splinters. The Thames estuary raider flew at a great height and later turned and disappeared out to sea, while people at a Kentish town saw two German Dornier ‘planes approach the coast. It was the first enemy air raid of the war over the Tyneside area.
A steamer was attacked by a Nazi ‘plane off the East Coast yesterday. It was fired on and bombed and was seen to be ablaze on the horizon. A second steamer, believed to be Italian, struck a mine off an East Coast town.
It is reported that the first detachment of Italian volunteers has arrived in Helsinki. Opening the Swedish Parliament yesterday, King Gustav of Sweden said Sweden would give Finland all the help possible and all that their own position permitted.
Except for occasional local attacks, the Red Army was yesterday less active than at any time since the war started.