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Grand Slam 22,000lbs earthquake bomb

1945, Stratosphere Chamber, On long term display

The ten-ton ‘earthquake’ bomb was developed by Barnes Wallis’ design team at Brooklands, Weybridge. Dropped from a modified Lancaster bomber, it became the largest conventional bomb to be used by the Allies in World War Two.

It was first used on 14th March 1945 on the Bielefeld railway viaduct. It destroyed the viaduct and achieved what over 3500 tonnes of smaller bombs had failed to do. 41 Grand Slam bombs were used on targets including an attack on the Valentin submarine pens at Farge near Bremen. These pens had 7 metre thick concrete roofs reinforced with iron but were penetrated by two Grand Slam bombs.

This example was presented to the British Aircraft Corporation by the Royal Air Force in 1968 and displayed outside Barnes Wallis’ former office in the motoring Clubhouse at Brooklands until 1989. It is now restored and displayed on a genuine ‘Grand Slam’ trolley.