History of Swansea
75 years ago, mankind was engaged in the most devastating and the bloodiest war in recorded history. We call it the World War II. It was during the war that Nazi bomber planes of Luftwaffe embarked on a mission of burning Swansea, a Welsh Town, into rubbles. The city was a strategic port during the war and its destruction was important for Hitler. On 27th of June 1940, Luftwaffe bombers started raiding the city. That’s when at 3:30 AM in the morning, the residents of the port city first heard the air raid sirens.
They dropped what we call incendiary bombs and explosives. Initial bombings were not very effective in terms of killing people as there were no casualties. However, the bombers accomplished one mission – striking terror at the hearts of the civilians of Swansea. The bombings continued in bits and pieces until in February 19, the Luftwaffe bombers wreaked havoc and started an event that rolled down the annals of history as The Three Nights Blitz.
It was from 19th February to 21st February of 1941 that Luftwaffe was engaged in heaving bombing. In those three days of complete destruction, Swansea was struck by 896 incendiary bombs which were known as High Explosive. In total, it took 13 hours and 48 minutes to drop 896 High Explosives.
A total of 230 people died and an additional 400 people were severely injured. The center of the city was eventually obliterated. That wasn’t the end though. The bombings continued until 13th of February 1943. Well, though the bombings ended, the air raid sirens continued till 7th of May 1945.
The haunting begins
The sirens did end back in 1945 but now they are back. Though not as loud as in 1940 through 1945, the sirens are still striking terror in hearts of the civilians of Swansea. These Swansea air raid sirens returned a year ago but with time, the frequency of these sirens are increasing. According the Mayhill community and Townhill community residents these sirens start somewhere in 4:30 AM and there are days when the sirens continue till 7:00 AM.
The sirens are not loud. They feeble but still loud enough that any light-sleeper will wake up easily. The local officials have received a number of complaints. It is not that only one or two people hear the sirens. There are many who are haunted by these sounds. However, they don’t unanimously agree on the actual source of the sirens.
Many say that these Swansea air raid sirens are nothing but sounds coming from the whistle blow during factory shift changes. Others say that the pub is the source of the sounds. While there are others who say that it is the sound of a train horn that goes off right before entering a tunnel as a message to distant lighthouse foghorn. None of the claims were taken lightly and all possible sources were thoroughly investigated. Sadly, nothing was eventually found.
Some connect the air raid sirens to ghost planes
Interestingly, Great Britain is riddled with stories of ghost plane sightings. The most recent sighting was this August in Derbyshire’s Peak District’s Dark Peak. Some say that these ghostly Swansea air raid sirens are similar to the ghost bomber sightings. Some think that the ghosts are trying to warn the residents of Swansea of bombing raids.
Well, maybe that’s not true but it is important that true source of the sounds be found out soon. After all, no one – that includes you and me – likes being haunted, especially by air raid sirens because no one like the horrors of war.