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Exeter was bombed by the German Luftwaffe in the Second World War, when a total of 18 raids between 1940 and 1942 flattened much of the city centre. In 1942, as part of the Baedeker Blitz and specifically in response to the RAF bombing of Lübeck, vast areas of the city, were levelled by incendiary bombing. Many historic buildings were destroyed, and others, including the grand Cathedral of St Peter in the heart of the city, were damaged.