Cornwall

Bismarck bombing role remembered

The Bismarck suffers a direct hit during battle in the Atlantic in 1941
Image caption The Bismarck suffers a direct hit during the battle in the Atlantic in 1941

820 Squadron at RNAS Culdrose has been commemorating its role in the sinking of the German battleship the Bismarck, 70 years ago.

A special exhibition for schoolchildren took place at the Naval base, telling the story of the battle.

The ship was caught when a torpedo from one of the Squadron's Swordfish planes hit her and damaged the rudder.

Commissioned in August 1940, The Bismarck was one of the most famous warships of the Second World War.

'Heavy attacks'

Hannah Quigley from 820 Squadron explained: "We managed to get the line open again for the ships to come across from America and get supplies back into Britain which was good when we were struggling with rations, so it was really good that we managed to get rid of the Bismarck."

At 45,000 tons, the Bismarck, was the largest battleship in the Kriegsmarine (German navy) and contravened the Anglo-German Naval Treaty of 1935 which limited German battleships to a maximum of 35,000 tons.

On the morning of 27 May 1941 the HMS King George V, HMS Rodney, HMS Dorsetshire and HMS Norfolk caught up with the incapacitated Bismarck where it was heavily attacked for almost two hours before sinking.

One of the children at the exhibition, Georgia Higgs, said: "I learnt that it was quite a big factor in Britain's victory in the war."

More on this story

Around the BBC