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Remember the Second World War in London

Published: Friday 4th of June 2010

London was subjected to an ongoing and persistent bombing campaign during the Second World War, with German planes regularly targeting key locations across the city.

Indeed, the various images of London during the Blitz still stand as an evocative reminder of those years.

Britain may have won the conflict in the end, but the capital has not forgotten this dark chapter in its history.

As a result, people who are interested in military history and the Second World War in particular can find plenty of fascinating things to see in London.

The Churchill War Rooms in Whitehall are recommended to any visitor to the city, regardless of whether they are an expert on the war or are only just starting to learn about it.

This is where the British government, led by prime minister Winston Churchill, managed the fight against the Nazis alongside the country's military commanders.

Although the bunkers ceased to be used after the war ended in 1945, it was not long before the historical significance of this location was recognised and they were preserved intact.

Today, they are a museum that serve as a fascinating insight into a period of history when Britain's way of life was genuinely under threat.

Visitors to London can walk around the command centre and see how the war was fought and eventually won.

They can also take the opportunity to learn about Churchill himself, a man now regarded as a national hero and one of Britain's greatest prime ministers.

After you have been here, why not head to the Imperial War Museum?

This is free to enter and a great opportunity to place all you have read about in history books in its proper historical context.

Although the museum focuses on many military conflicts involving the UK over the years, this is a particular treat for those with a keen interest in World War Two.

Indeed, it houses plenty of permanent exhibitions which contain artefacts and displays that vividly put across every aspect of the war.

From the build-up to the conflict in the years after the First World War, to the so-called Phoney War in which Germany simply failed to launch a major assault on British soil, it's all here.

You'll also get a fascinating insight into how people in London coped with the Blitz, as well as the details on specific frontline conflicts such as the Battle of Britain and how Britain's navy dealt with the Nazi threat.

One of the most moving exhibitions in the Imperial War Museum tells the story of the concentration camps, where the Nazis rounded up anyone who did not fit Hitler's vision of a perfect society.

More than six million Jews were killed in the camps, and hearing the testimony of the survivors is a reminder of why it is so important to never forget the atrocities committed throughout history.

After the UK's policy of appeasing the Nazis came to an end, the country put up a stern fight against the invaders.

London was at the very centre of this fight, as it was both a key target for the enemy and the place from where the war effort was led.

A trip to London is a great opportunity to learn the ins and outs of this pivotal period in human history and see firsthand where the decisions which shaped the future of the world were made.

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