Zeppelin raids, Gothas and 'Giants'

Britain's First Blitz - 1914 -1918

Ian Castle looks at the World War One air raids on Britain - the First Blitz

40 (3)

9th/10th August 1915 (part 1)

East Yorks., Kent, Suffolk

Casualties: 17 killed, 21 injured


Damage: £11,992

On 9th August, five Zeppelins set out to raid England. The older L.9 targeted the Humber while four newer models, the L.10, L.11, L.12 and L.13, aimed for London. L.13 turned back early with engine problems.


L.9, commanded by Kapitänleutnant Odo Loewe, came inland after a couple of encounters with RNAS aircraft. He believed he bombed Hull, but was further west, his bombs dropping on Goole. Crossing the River Ouse his eight explosive and 13 incendiary bombs fell from east to west. The first deaths were at 2 Sotheron Street – at the junction of Victoria Street - where 65-year-old widow Sarah Acaster, who ran a fish and chip shop, her two grown up daughters, Kezia and Sarah Ann, and a visitor, died in the wreckage of the house. Other bombs, falling on an area between North Street and Aire Street where, within a locality bordered by George Street, Ouse Street, North Street and Bromley’s Yard, ten small houses were wrecked and 12 people killed. There were no more losses after that, but L.9 dropped 16 more bombs, causing damage on the docks and railway sidings before departing. On her route back to the coast, L.9 dropped three incendiaries on an open field at Hotham. Total casualties in Goole were 16 killed and 11 wounded.


L.10, commanded by Oberleutnant-zur-See Friedrich Wenke, reported that he had reached the outskirts of London and bombed shipping in the Thames. In fact, he lost his way and eventually dropped his bombs on the Isle of Sheppey, coming close to the RNAS base at Eastchurch. Wenke reported dropping 82 bombs in total, but only 14 were discovered on land. Six explosive and six incendiaries landed on the airfield, many close to the hangers, but the only damage was broken glass. About half a mile south east of Eastchurch, two explosive bombs dropped at Pump Hill where they caused no damage.



(See Part 2 for details of the rest of raid)


British air crew losses:


RNAS: 1 killed

German losses:


Navy Zeppelin L.12

No casualties

Goole monument

The Zeppelin Raid memorial in Goole cemetary. The memorial is in the form of an open book bearing the names of the 16 victims of the raid and is positioned over their mass grave.

(Courtesy of the Goole First World War Research Group - www.goolefirstworldwar.blogspot.co.uk)