Saturday, 3 February 2018

Operation Starfish, World War 2 Dummy Aerodrome, Sowerby

Operation Starfish was a large scale 2nd World War decoy plan to fool German bombers in to dropping there payloads in the wrong areas. The plan was developed by Colonel John Turner after the near destruction of Coventry in November 1940. The sites were developed in the countryside approx. 4 miles from what were considered targets for the German bombers. The surrounding fields usually had a metal trough through the undergrowth which would be filled with a mixture of creosote, coal, diesel oil and set alight when bombers were in the area, after a short time of usually 15mins water would be added to create an explosion and a burst of flame fooling the overhead bombers in to thinking that it was the target after the initial bombs had dropped.

The site at Sowerby was developed as a decoy for the cities of Manchester and Leeds as well as the railway goods yards at, Greetland, Halifax, Todmorden, Littleborough and Rochdale. The site had a 2 room bunker which is still standing, which was entered through a short passage behind a blast wall. There is not much evidence in the area for what it was used for.





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