V-1 Attack of the 24th December 1944

During the night of the 24th December 1944 the Northwest of England was the target of an attack by the Luftwaffe using air launched V-1 cruise missiles. These were launched from He111s off the East coast in the area around Hull. A number of these weapons ended their flights on the moorland of the Peak District most of these sites are marked by distinct craters.

Two fell close to Buxton, one on private land the other on what is now access land on Black Edge. A single missile came down in Macclesfield Forest and one landed on the moorland close to Outer Edge in the Northeast of the National Park.

Parts from a Luftmine B on Margary Hill, Howden Moors

Above is a photograph of Alan at a site on the Upper Midhope Moors which had in the past been attributed to one of the V-1s but thanks to Mr B. Thompson was identified as a Luftmine B (1000kg parachute mine) in late 2007. The true site had actually been shown in Dark Peak Aircraft Wrecks Vol.2 but with supplementary photos of this location and a map reference for here. The air-dropped mine was used by the Luftwaffe in a number of their raids against England and was probably dropped sometime in 1941 when the concentration of attacks on Sheffield and Manchester were at their highest. There was no record in the records of No.16 Balloon Centre in Sheffield of this occurrence.

Other air-dropped mines also fell in the Peak District but did not leave such long lasting blast marks, one can still be traced on Black Edge not far from where the V-1 eventually fell.

The actual site is further to the north not far from the crash site of Oxford LX518 and is shown below.

Black Edge V-1 site near Buxton, Derbyshire
Above is the V-1 site on Black Edge near Buxton, on our visit we found many small pieces of shrapnel in the crater.
Macclesfield Forest V-1 bomb site, Cheshire
Above is a photograph of the V-1 crater on the edge of Macclesfield Forest, the crater rim is just visible in the centre of the picture
Macclesfield Forest V-1 bomb site, Cheshire
This photograph taken from Teggs Nose shows more clearly the crater formed by the Macclesfield bomb.