The Netmaker

"The Netmaker" the story follows four families who are all linked in some way to the Wilkinsons Lemonade Factory that was bombed during WW2. This is a tribute to the 107 people who lost their lives on 3rd May 1941

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“The Northern Gale was getting ready to leave the fish quay for the waters of Eyemouth where the reports of herring shoals had been spotted. Geordie Johnson and Jim Hardy went to get the stores for a four day trip. The fishing had been good so far apart from the loss of the Sandpiper. There was a cruiser patrolling the North East coast now so the lads all felt safer knowing that if there was a sub in the area the cruiser would be able to detect it. It would shadow all the boats in the area.

 The crew assembled on the dockside by seven then the nets were checked and repaired. The engine was started and the engineer scrutinised to see if there were any signs of problems. By ten o’clock Geordie now satisfied that everything was in order gave the signal for them to cast off. The boat slipped out of the gut then turned left and headed out of the piers. It was just an hour before high water. “The Repulse” and the “King George the Fifth” also left the harbour that night. The two merchant ships were towed out past the piers then they were allowed to continue on there journey they were off to supply the Navy ships in the Atlantic.

 

 

 

Bremerhaven Airfield Germany 9.00

Karl Heinz Fuller spoke to his men before they boarded the Heinkell HE 111 Bombers. They masqueraded as cargo planes and were not easily spotted.

The bomber had a 74 feet wingspan, and was 57ft 5inches long. It had seven machine guns and was capable of carrying 4,400lbs of bombs.

The five man crew consisted of the pilot, Navigator /Bomber bombardier, Nose gunner,/Ventral gunner, Dorsal gunner/ Radio operator, and Side gunner.

It had a maximum speed of 273 mph with maximum fuel and could fly at a height of 21, 330 feet.

“Sind bereit, Wir harren is es Zeit (Are we ready gentlemen it is time)

“Ya Herr General.’

The men made a noise as their boots came together and gave the German salute.

Hail Hitler they all voiced before climbing.’

Once on board the engines were started and the propellers began to turn then gradually pick up speed.

They taxied to the runway then one after another took off. The six aircraft were soon airborne and they plotted a course towards the North East coast where they planned to bomb the ship repair yards and the man railway lines to cut off supplies to British troops.  

“Wie wert ist das ziel? (How far is the target?) asked Werner Rudel the pilot. |Hans Molder replied; Funfzig Meilen Nordosten kuste.’ (50 miles to the North East coast)

Rudel checked his watch then banked the plane to the left.

 

 

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