Themes

Wessex Film & Sound Archive

Transcript of the audio sound track of the clip taken from
Port of Destiny (1946)

Narrator: Then followed the air raids – carefully calculated devastation. The Nazis, knowing Southampton’s worth, were determined that she should be utterly destroyed from the air. 57 raids battered, blasted and crippled the town and docks. Warehouses, stores, granaries crumbled under the rain of high explosives. One quarter of the town was gutted. But perhaps the greatest single piece of damage was when this mammoth cold storage plant was hit. This huge building, filled to capacity with butter, meat and fat, burned for days. And in that fire the nation lost a large slice of its weekly ration.

[dramatic music]

Narrator: Again and again they struck. With each raid the toll of damage mounted steadily, until eventually a grievously wounded Southampton reluctantly admitted to temporary defeat.

[sad music]

Narrator: To avoid continuing incidents such as this, the Port was temporarily closed to all but the smallest craft.