Coventry - Rebuilding Morale and the City

The people of Coventry were worried that the bombing would resume the night of November 15, 1940.  Fortunately, that did not happen.

When a report about the dire situation in Coventry was broadcast, nationally, government officials considered taking over the BBC. They didn't want the loss of morale in Coventry to spread throughout Britain.

Immediately after the attack, George VI visited Coventry. Stunned people were greatly encouraged that their King had taken the time to visit them.

Six days after the bombs fell, the people of Coventry held two mass funerals for those who had died. Children in the hospital, trying to recover from their own wounds, were learning that fathers and mothers had been killed.

Over the initial shock, Coventry's residents were determined the Nazis would not get the best of them. Within weeks, some factories reopened. The people's resolve to beat the Nazis had returned, even stronger than before.

A mass panic, which government officials had so feared, never materialized. When given the chance to leave their city, only 300 Coventry residents took advantage of the offer.

"The Blitz Spirit" took hold in Britain. As a result, "to Coventrate" - a new verb coined by the Nazis after the bombing of Coventry - backfired.

Later in the war, Allies reciprocated with the type of bombing experience Germany had inflicted on Coventry. Civilian deaths, in Dresden and Hamburg, far surpassed those of Coventry.

The "new" city of Coventry soon arose from the ashes of the "old" one. Everything, for the people and their town, had literally changed overnight.

For years, people could neither write about their experiences nor forgive those who had caused such harm. But then ... "You just have to let go," says a survivor. Over time, "it's past" began to replace the hatred.

See, also:

Coventry - The Devastation Begins

Coventry - Survivors Tell Their Story

Coventry - Decimated by Nazi Bombs


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Author: Carole D. Bos, J.D. 5197stories and lessons created

Original Release: Apr 13, 2014

Updated Last Revision: Apr 15, 2015

Media Credits

Clip from the BBC's Timewatch - "Blitz:  The Bombing of Coventry."  Copyright, BBC, all rights reserved.  Clip provided here as fair use for educational purposes and to acquaint new viewers with the program.


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"Coventry - Rebuilding Morale and the City" AwesomeStories.com. Apr 13, 2014. Jun 01, 2020.
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