The Cuckoo

by Arthur


Another item that is worth a mention during this period, was the appearance of what were termed Tip & Run raiders. These were low flying German aircraft, which came in below the radar screen usually when the sun was just coming up over the Eastern Horizon, making it very difficult to observe and give adequate warning to both civilian and military personnel, before they had carried out their attack. The authorities overcame this in the only way possible. They created an audible warning system, or siren, which consisted of the sound of the European Cuckoo!     

This was also known locally as The Crash Warning. On hearing this, if you were out on the streets at the time, the advice was to dive for the nearest possible means of cover, as this warning meant .The enemy is overhead!

Following this period we then had the V1. Flying Bombs or DoodleBugs. They were all right, as long as you could here the engine, if it stopped, it was on the way down. Depending on its height of course, but usually its glide path would be approximately I to 1-1/2 miles from engine cutout to point of impact. On windy nights with a moon plus broken cloud cover, one could here them approaching, then with a change of wind direction we would no longer here the sound of the engine! On approach this was a bit frightening, but once the V1. Was overhead, you knew you were in a safe position and some unfortunate poor souls further inland could be the victims of what I suppose one could say, were the first true terror weapons to be launched against Britain from the continent.



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