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Title:NAVAL BOMBARDMENT PART 1: SHIP CONTROL WITH AIR OBSERVATION [Allocated Title]
Film Number:ADM 2577-1-4
Summary: Naval instructional film describing a pre-arranged bombardment using ship control and air spotting by fighter-reconnaissance aircraft.
Description: The scene is set upon the Normandy coast. The film describes the gunnery organisation of a Southampton Class cruiser, including the Bridge Plotting Room which coordinates the shoot and relays the air spotter's directions to the Transmitting Station responsible for directing the guns by means of the Fire Control Table, an "elaborate [mechanical] calculating machine" which corrects the firing instructions to compensate for the ship's movement and the observed error in the fall of shot. The pilots of the two spotting aircraft are briefed and then flown off from an aircraft carrier; having once located the enemy battery, the spotter uses a clock grid to plot the mean point of impact of successive shots and report the necessary fire corrections. The target is first bracketed, and then destroyed as the cruiser fires for effect. The spotting pilot locates an impromptu target nearby and plots it on the clock grid. The cruiser then fires for effect, without ranging, and the pilot, having re-hung the clock on the new target, reports the fall of shot. This second enemy battery is quickly destroyed.