The remains of one of  four V1 launching sites in Almelo "Nijreesbos"

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This is a picture of the launching site 1 after it was blown by the Germans it was this site where the last,
V1 from WW II was launched on Fridaynight March 30th 1945 at aprox 19:00 hrs.

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Launching site Nijreesbos, and the site at Platenkamp launchingsite3 a few kilometers from site 1 and 2





All pictures taken after the liberation of Almelo at site Nijreesbos







All abovepictures taken after the liberation of Almelo at V1 Launching site Bolkshoek


Click the picture for a larger image

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Picture 1: The fundament for supporting the ramp

           Picture 2: The front end of the launching platform the socalled "catapult"      

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Picture 3: Some more concrete from the site

Picture 4: Small water reservoir.


Click the picture for a larger image


Launching platform and water reservoir




Launching platform


Water reservoir

Drawing above © Ph. Despriet

The launching sites in the eastern part of The Netherlands where divided in four groups each with three or four launching sites.
The complexes where located at:
A: Schoonheten, Nijverdal, Koningsbelt and Lettele, the command unit was stationed at Nieuwheten
B: Oolde, 't Joppe and Harfsen, the command unit was stationed at Laren (Gld)
C: Three launching sites in Rijssen and one in Wierden
D: Almelo one site at Bolkshoek two at Nijreesbos and one at Platenkamp, the command unit was stationed at Hertme

A brief story of some shocking moments in Almelo

Monday Feb 19th 1945 will be engraved in the minds of many AlmeloŽrs, on this day the Germans launched again a V1. From the site at "De Bolkshoek" a V1 is launched and people see the V1 go, it's exhaust looks like a not well functioning welding flame. All the people wait for the moment the sound of the engine will get a higher happens again and the machine disappears........a few minutes later however people hear a "put..put..put" sound the characteristic sound of a V1 bomb....this can not be happening !!!! When people look to the south they see 1000 kg of explosive roring directly to the city. After a dance of death the V1 engine stopped and it's nose dives to the ground and explodes at the Paradijsweg in Almelo, where 4 people where killed.

On Tuesday a day later the 20th of Feb 1945 the next victim of a V1 bomb in Almelo will be made,  This morning they started the launching of V1 bombs very early. At arround 10:00 in the morning another Fehlzundung the bomb dives down and goes another way as it was used to go. At about 4 to 5 metres of hight the V1 is flying into the direction of the Planthofsweg were it crashes itself and explodes in one of the houses there, one person was killed.

Monday March 19th 1945 will be the last time that Almelo will be shocked by an explosion of a V1 bomb. This time the bomb is more devastating because it crashes down and explodes in a populated area in Almelo "De Riet". Fortunately there is only one person killed but it sure could have been more and this could have been a real disaster for the city.

Some details about the V1 (Flakzielgeršt -76  -  FZG -76 ) "Doodlebug"

Notice: This text has been copied with kind permission from The Atlantikwall Website)

To launch a V1 you need a metal ramp under a certain angle. The V1 was launched, or better catapulted from the metal ramp. The catapult was necessary, because the V1 had no possibilities to start on it's own from a stand still position. The thrust to catapult the V1 from the ramp came from a device called the "Damferzeuger" (steamgenerator). This steam generator generated steam by mixing two chemicals (T-Stoff and Z-Stoff).

Germans started to construct the V1 launch sites from 1943 onwards. In the method of constructing, you see a development that the sites became more and more easier to construct:

1.     The first sites were the so called "Wasserwerke". These were enormous bunkers.
They were used as storage, assembly and launch facility.


2.     The second generation were the so called SKI sites. Germans called the "Feuerstellung Alter Bauart" (construction old way). This was a site with a large number of constructions.
These were not real bunkers, but more fortified buildings, constructed of brick and Formsteine.
A lot of effort was needed to construct a complete site.


3.      The last generation are launching sites consisted only of the absolute necessary construction. In the beginning of 1944, this was the launch site itself, a launching bunker and  a small storage building. At the end of 1944 and early 1945, these sites only consisted  of a launching ramp. The launching sites in Almelo are all from the last generation which means it only consists a launching ramp.

The third generation sites are very simple and became even more simpler towards the end of the war.
The first sites in France had a concrete launching bunker and a small fortified building for storage.
The sites in the Netherlands and Germany don't have a launching bunker  and storage building.

Permission to place this text was granted by the author(s)

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One of two air pressure balls  from a V1 in my backyard

The V1 was a surface to surface class projectile and was powered by an Argus-Schmidt pulse-jet-engine,
that made the characteristic put-put-put sound.
They typically flew between 900 and 1500 meters altitude
The overall length varied from 7,50 meters to 8,03 meters
The total weight of the V1 including a1000 kg warhead was approx 2200 kg.
The fuel was aircraft fuel with a low octane percentage and it took 600 liters for a range of 250 km to 370 km,
so the launch sites had to be close to the coast to hit southern England.
The V1 is totally made out of metal, but for the short rudimentary wings,
which varied from length in 4,80 meters to 5,25 meters wood was used,
it had also a primitive guidance system which worked with a little propellor on the front of the "rocket"
The speed for the first types was between 550 km/h and 600 km/h, on later types the speed was raised to 655 km/h
In total there were approx 25.000 V1 "rockets" build only a few where used for propaganda leaflets without a warhead.

Photo's watermarked are © The Hins / Original Photo's: © Public Archives Canada