On the night of 8/9th of March 1945 the German occupying forces in the Channel Islands launched a raid on the French port at Granville. The port was in the hands of the Allies and is situated in the Manche department of Normandy.
There is an excellent article with maps and photographs which is linked further down this blog post which I recommend reading for a detailed understanding of the raid. Before you do I thought I would share a few bits of information that may be of interest.
Whilst the raid was initially planned by Rudolf Graf von Schmettow it was his successor as the islands Kommandant, Vice-Admiral Huffmeier who took the credit. Huffmeier is notable for having previously commanded the battle cruiser Scharnhorst.
The raid took place just two months before the end of the war. There are many reasons suggested for why they mounted the raid. A morale boost for the garrison in the Channel Islands and an attempt to steal much needed supplies are just two of the suggestions. They also succeeded in taking a large number of prisoners back to Jersey.
They liberated some German POWs although some decided that they would rather stay put and promptly did a runner to surrender again rather than end up on the Channel Islands.
Below is the report on the raid that the German forces made the Guernsey Evening Press publish.
In his report to the Historical Division, Group West, written in May 1948 Rudolf Graf von Schmettow outlined what happened. Extracts below.
The detailed article about the raid produced by Jersey War Tours is here and is well worth a read. It includes period photographs as well as modern photographs, maps, documents and in depth analysis.
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