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ENEMY ACTION - Uboat periscope

by cornwallcsv

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Archive List > Royal Air Force

Contributed by 
People in story: 
Dougie Alford
Location of story: 
St Just, Cornwall
Article ID: 
Contributed on: 
10 October 2005

341 CWS080604 19:23:48 - 19:26:30

This story has been added by CSV volunteer Linda Clark on behalf of Dougie Alford. His story was given to the Trebah WW2 Video Archive, supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund in 2004. The Trebah Garden Trust understand the site's terms and conditions.

The Coastguard didn't like us on the cliffs or beaches because along the coast from Pendeen to Sennen, I think I am right in saying, there were Uboats. I remenber that on one occasion my friend (who now lives in Vancouver)and I were lying on the cliffs watching timber coming in. My friend knew the spot well as a year or two earlier he had fallen and cut his head open on the very same spot. This particular piece of timber kept going up and down but it didn't move anywhere. The waves would break over it and then it would disappear before coming up again about 5 minutes later. All of a sudden we were caught by the Coastguard who had come round the cliff. We should have known better! He told us to stay where we were while he went up to the village to find a phone. He went up to Botallack Manor Farm to 'phone up' and the next thing we knew three Home Guard turned up with their rifles. I don't know what they were going to do with those! We were told to go home as the RAF had been called to dispose of the submarine. When the aircraft came the submarine had gone so they didn't know what their mission was all about. I don't know if anything was dropped but it was all happening down in the bay in the dark. I don't know for sure if it was a German Uboat but it made sense that it was. What we couldn't understand was how it could come up and then disappear before coming up again about 5 minutes later.

We didn't know the dangers on the beaches and we never knew if anyone was watching us but that was the only time I saw a German Uboat. Things were always happening along the coast that we weren't aware of.

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