Thanks to readers of E.J. Rudsdale's blog, it is now possible to corroborate EJR's account of the German plane which was shot down in the Clacton area on 16th September 1941 and his sighting of the Northern Lights in Essex on 18th September 1941.
Mike Dennis kindly drew my attention to the German Aircrew Remembrance Society website which has an entry for a German plane shot down near Clacton on Sea on 16th September 1941 and includes the pilot's name, Erwin Veil. Roger Kennell of the Clacton Victoria County History Group then contacted me to say that his father recorded the following entry in his diary on Thursday 18th September 1941: 'Last Tues we shot down a German bomber near Jaywick'. This would have been the night of 16th September 1941 and, therefore, also confirms EJR's account of this plane being shot down in the Clacton area.
Roger Kennell's father also recorded on 18th September 1941: 'Aurora Borealis seen tonight', confirming that it was possible for both EJR and Mr Kennell Senior to see the Northern Lights as far south as Essex that night.
Many thanks to Mike and Roger for your help with my enquiries about these events.
The Clacton VCH Group's book: Clacton at War, which Roger Kennell helped to compile, is a fascinating history of Clacton, a coastal town on the frontline in the Second World War. CP