Today – 7th September – marks 70 years since the start of the Blitz when, between 7th September 1940 and 10th May 1941, more than 43,000 civilians were killed, at least 140,000 injured and an estimated million homes across the UK suffered damage or destruction as a result of air raids.
London, which suffered 57 consecutive nights of attacks starting on 7th September, features numerous memorials relating to World War II including the National Firefighters Memorial located on the Jubilee Walkway, just south of St Paul’s in the City. It depicts firefighters in action during the Blitz and serves as a tribute to those who fought against the fires caused by the raids as well as commemorating the lives of all firefighters who have died while on active duty. For more on the memorial, see www.firefightersmemorial.co.uk.
For a series of interesting reconstructed photos showing the difference between London during the Blitz and now, visit Sky News here. Or for more on the history of the Blitz, see the dedicated BBC website here. And for a terrific graphic showing fire brigade callouts in London on the first day of the Blitz, see The Guardian’s datablog.
Meanwhile, the London Transport Museum in Covent Garden has today opened a new exhibition, Under Attack, which explores the role public transport played during World War II in three cities – London and Coventry – both of which are marking 70 years since the start of the Blitz, and Dresden in Germany which is marking the 65th anniversary of the Dresden Firestorm. The exhibition, developed in conjunction with Coventry Transport Museum and the Verkehrsmuseum Dresden, runs until 31st March next year. For more details, visit www.ltmuseum.co.uk.