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Published on Apr 13, 2014
Titles read: "PATHE GAZETTE SPECIAL - FLYING FORTRESSES BOMB FRANCE".
Somewhere in Britain.
At a United States Army Air Force (USAAF) base we see gun crews preparing the new type Flying Fortresses (B17s), loading guns and bombing up. Planes have names such as 'Baby Doll', 'Yankee Doodle' and 'Birmingham Blitzkreig', but no artwork. Gun crews autograph bombs before loading them.
Pilots arrive at the briefing room on bicycles where they are told of the target for today (natural sound). Good C/Us of airmen as they listen (handsome!).
The air crews climb aboard the bombers. Very good shots as the Fortresses taxi and take off. One is called 'Stinky'. Ground crew wave from their bikes. Air to air shots of the formations.
Shots on board a Fortress flying over France as gunners open fire and we see a stick of bombs falling on a target below. Air to air shot of a Fortress with engine smoking. Various shots of planes returning to the airbase and landing with flaps down. Crowds of airmen wait for their return.
Commander General of Bomber Command, General Eaker, travelling on the plane 'Yankee Doodle', gets out of his aircraft and is greeted on the airfield by USAAF Commander General Spaatz. In the interrogation room we hear the pilots talking about the attack on the target. Generals Spaatz and Eaker talk about the raid.
High angle view of airmen milling about outside a building.
Note: excellent footage of USAAF crews on a mission. FILM ID:1338.27
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British Pathé also represents the Reuters historical collection, which includes more than 120,000 items from the news agencies Gaumont Graphic (1910-1932), Empire News Bulletin (1926-1930), British Paramount (1931-1957), and Gaumont British (1934-1959), as well as Visnews content from 1957 to the end of 1979. All footage can be viewed on the British Pathé website. https://www.britishpathe.com/