1944: Word War ll the final tally

Click on this map for a clearer but not prefect picture

The quality of reproduction of the map in this Sussex Agricultural Express article is not that great but it gives some sense of where the action took place in the Cuckfield and East Sussex area. The statistics also confirm the scale and type of hazards that the local population faced. This does not show the death toll and disabilities suffered through combat:

This diagram shows approximately where high explosive bombs were dropped in East Sussex by enemy aircraft in all raids up to the beginning of 1944. It does not include “Doodlebugs”. The number of air raid incidents recorded in the county during this period was 2327. With a total of 5578 high explosive bombs. There were 1,416 casualties of which 348 were fatal.

And 437 were dealt with by hospitals. The average number of siren mornings in the various warning areas was 1084. These figures do not include the boroughs of Brighton, Hastings and Eastbourne.

The number of air raid incidents in the various years were as follows 1940: 518 (a percentage of the whole period of 65.23); 1941: 311 (percentage 13.37); 1942:156 (percentage 6.70); 1943: 342 (percentage 14.70).

The percentage of incidents which occurred in the various districts in the county in comparison with the county total were: Boroughs: Bexhill 4.39; Hove 1.76, Rye 1.03, Lewes 0.61. Urban districts: Seaford 2.40, Newhaven 2.19, East Grinstead 1.50, Portslade 0.68, Cuckfield 0.64, Burgess Hill 0.34. Rural districts:

Battle 26.69, Uckfield 20.33 current, Hailsham 18.44, Cuckfield 10.97, Chailey 3.00. Of the total of 5578 high explosive bombs 4477 fell in 1940, 626 during 1941 174 i 1942 and 301 during 1943.

The number of enemy planes which were brought down in the county was 71, of which 53 came down in 1940, seven in 1941, three in 1942 and 8 in 1943. In addition to the high explosive bombs there were 470 incendiary bomb incidents.

The number of incendiaries in which the incident varied from one to several thousands, and an estimated total of all types is 70,000. Other objects and incidents, including butterfly bombs, can and machine-gunning, land mines, petrol tanks, etc (but not flying bombs) totalled 320 of which 57 were recorded in 1940, 48 in 1941, 67 in 1942 and 157 in 1943.

The casualties were as follows: 1940: killed 129, hospital 138, others 172; 1941: 35, 15 and 54; 1942: 45, 106 and 117; 1943:139, 178 and 288.

Sussex Agricultural Express, 3 November 1944

Contributed by Malcolm Davison.