There are not many newspaper reports into what happened on that fateful night in April 1941, because of the nature of censorship during the War, stories like what happened at The Old Palace School did not always make the national headlines. Keeping the morale high on the home front was a number one priority for the government and the loss of 34 Firefighters like this would have had a devastating affect on the whole Countries morale, had this story been wildly reported in the national press. That’s why this story was suppressed and remained untold and undiscovered because of Emergency Defence Regulations.
The full details were finally uncovered six decades later by the wonderful Firemen Remembered charity which unveiled a memorial in April 1997, at Lansbury Lawrence Primary School, on the site of the old school destroyed 56 years before. The story only came to light when William Somerville’s Son, Frank, discovered the story in his Father’s diaries. William Somerville was a member of the AFS Sub-Station in Millborne Street School, Hackney and he would have been at the Old Palace School that night, had he not been on leave. The other six members of his crew died that night. Realising what an effect the tragedy had on his Father, Frank decided to arrange for a commemorative plaque to be sited at the rebuilt school.
The following newspaper articles have been discovered by myself over the years and if you know of a newspaper article or report into The Old Palace School Bombing then I Would love to hear from you.
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