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Channel Dash 1942

Channel Dash 1942

The Channel Dash, 1942

In February 1942 three of Hitler's most formidable battleships accompanied by the largest German fleet ever assembled broke cover from the shelter of the harbour at Brest to make for Wilhelmshaven in Northern Germany. Lt Eugene Esmonde VC was charged with leading an attack upon the ships with a squadron of 6 Swordfish torpedo bomber aircraft.

The outdated Swordfish aircraft faced overwhelming odds in the face of Germany's modern naval guns and her fleet's heavy fighter escort. Lt Esmonde and twelve aircrew died in the attack, only five men survived. None of the Swordfish returned from the raid. Lt Cdr Edgar Lee and PO D. Bunce were two of the survivors. This pack is based upon their account of the Channel Dash .

The web film in this pack is 55Mb in size, and will NOT play while you are downloading it. Unlike other online video, it has been designed for saving to your hard disc and viewing offline more than once (maybe in the classroom). Please allow plenty of time for downloading.


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Example Resource

Key Resources

Additional Resources

A VISIT TO THE MUSEUM is an ideal way to put the resources in this pack in context using the Museum's exhibitions and activity workshops. 

The WW2 Hall at the Museum includes the Swordfish Exhibition which tells the story of some of the most significant missions undertaken by this singular aircraft.  The remainder of this substantial exhibition provides an historical and aviation context for the story.

Workshops and talks available at the Museum are listed in the Secondary School History and Citizenship Brochure

Of particular relevance to this pack are:

  • The Role of the Aircraft in WW2 - Presentation - 1 hour
  • WW2 Artefacts and Archives
  • The Battle of the Atlantic - Presentation
  • The Battle of the Atlantic - documents and sources

Useful external links with resources for this pack:


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