Channel 4 has now announced that its documentary about the recreation of the Dams Raid will be aired on Monday 2 May at 8pm.
in May. No exact date has yet been given, but my guess that sometime around the raid’s anniversary on 16/17 May will be a good bet.
The story has been carried in this week’s Broadcast magazine. The content is behind a paywall, but I have reproduced extracts here:
Channel 4 has recreated the WWII mission to destroy two German dams that was immortalised in classic film The Dam Busters.
The Return Of The Dambusters (working title) is a 1 x 120-minute special from Windfall Films in which a team of experts attempt to use replicas of the famous ‘bouncing bombs’ to destroy a purpose-built, 130ft by 30ft concrete dam.
The film uses a modified Douglas DC4 aircraft built in WWII, which is a similar size and reaches the same top speed as the Lancaster bombers that gained notoriety [sic!] for obliterating the dams in Germany’s industrial heartland.
Cambridge engineer Dr Hugh Hunt, who has appeared as an expert on a stunt special of Channel 5’s Fifth Gear, led the mission, co-ordinating engineers, explosives experts, mechanics and aircrew.
The team behind the recreation of the 1943 mission also had fewer resources and less time than the WWII team.
Ian Duncan, director of Windfall Films, said: “By attempting to recreate a near-impossible WWII mission, this encompasses everything from ingenious resourcefulness to high-octane suspense.
“The Return Of The Dambusters will give viewers a vivid insight into a momentous part of our history, with a fascinating approach into reconstructing the bouncing bomb and building a model of the Möhne Dam.”
Below you can see a picture of the bomb attached to the
Dakota DC4 (thanks dg!) before it was dropped:
Those involved went to ground for a while but recently the project’s chief engineer, Dr Hugh Hunt, from the University of Cambridge, surfaced and gave a lecture on the engineering principles behind the bomb. (Hat tip, Stephen Cooke)
I’d welcome a report from anyone in the Cambridge area who attended the lecture.