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Op Banner photos - some memories for the old and bold

I googled "Belfast Blitz" and found this website:


which has the photo below (very similar-looking area) , the metadata for which identifies it as an IWM photo of Sidney Street, Belfast in 1941 (I was unable to find it when I had quick look at IWM online):


Not at all sure what (if anything) it proves, though. Mebbe just a reminder that London wasn't the only UK city targeted by Onkel Adolf.
Belfast suffered one of the biggest one night death tolls of the Blitz, after London and Liverpool. The defences were shockingly limited as it was assumed the Luftwaffe would not travel all the way across the air defences of Great Britain to reach Belfast, but they did. Knocked the shipyards and the aircraft factories for six and caused huge destruction to housing.

One of the most famous consequences of the Blitz on Belfast was that fire engines from the Free State (as was) rushed north to help extinguish the blaze, which was a humanitarian gesture amid the then ongoing cold war between north and south.
 
Wow. Quite a disturbing piece of film. I served in Strabane in 1992 by which time most of the town looked very different. The locals however had not become any more friendly. Perhaps I have lived a sheltered life but being called a f****** c*** by a pair of five-year-old twin girls came as a surprise.

Also the nature and level of racism shown by the local population towards a black soldier in my platoon was pretty disturbing.

I wish Strabane well but I think I'll take my holidays elsewhere.
Frequently called the n word by our local Civpop especially on Friday nights when they were all pished. The majority of the platoon were white, but cam cream was a unit SOP and it certainly seemed to confuse the locals - much to the entertainment of our Caribbean heritage troops.
 

HCL

War Hero
Wow. Quite a disturbing piece of film. I served in Strabane in 1992 by which time most of the town looked very different. The locals however had not become any more friendly. Perhaps I have lived a sheltered life but being called a f****** c*** by a pair of five-year-old twin girls came as a surprise.

Also the nature and level of racism shown by the local population towards a black soldier in my platoon was pretty disturbing.

I wish Strabane well but I think I'll take my holidays elsewhere.

Nigel Benn was given a lovely reception, by both sides. /sarcasm
 
Talking of daft things that occifers do, I seem to recall a rupert as part of an advance party out on an urban FP when a call came over the radio of a bank or post office getting done over, escapologists on a motor bike 2 up. The bike was found by the FP call sign propped up against a lamp post, the subbie first time in NI, wanders over to check it despite the NCO telling him not to, remote or command wire with a charge under the seat, as he gets to it its triggered & he's gone. Can't find anything in the lost lives list though that rings a bell. Closest incident was a tom who leaned against or moved a push bike that had been booby trapped with explosives in the frame.
gerald seymour walt i think
 
A tour in HQNI combined with regular access to weaponry has seen the demise of a few careers. I remember the case of one such, who accidentally knocked a Browning off the desk into the waste bin. Before it could be retrieved, our hero was distracted, the bin was subsequntly emptied by the cleaner and the aforementioned pistol entered the rubbish disposal process which ended on a council tip somewhere in W Belfast.

'Career moving, career moving, career stops: upon looking inside you find lack of future prospects!!'

Sent from my SM-G973F using Tapatalk
One of Dads fellow Troop Commanders in Cyprus back in 1956 tried to stop a fleeing car by hitting the windscreen with his pistol. The pistol ended up in the drivers seat, and was never seen again.
 
Belfast suffered one of the biggest one night death tolls of the Blitz, after London and Liverpool. The defences were shockingly limited as it was assumed the Luftwaffe would not travel all the way across the air defences of Great Britain to reach Belfast, but they did. Knocked the shipyards and the aircraft factories for six and caused huge destruction to housing.

One of the most famous consequences of the Blitz on Belfast was that fire engines from the Free State (as was) rushed north to help extinguish the blaze, which was a humanitarian gesture amid the then ongoing cold war between north and south.
The Luftwaffe hit Dublin in May 41. Did any fire engines from Ulster rush south ?
 

Bubbles_Barker

LE
Book Reviewer
The Luftwaffe hit Dublin in May 41. Did any fire engines from Ulster rush south ?
No, but some petrol tankers were seen speeding in that direction.
 
The Luftwaffe hit Dublin in May 41. Did any fire engines from Ulster rush south ?
In fairness it was only one stick of bombs, and there wasn't much of a blaze, if any at all in Dublin.

A German radio reporter was on board one of the Luftwaffe aircraft that targeted Belfast, he reported,

" we stared silently into a sea of flames such as none of us had seen before...in Belfast there was not a large number of conflagrations but just one enormous conflagration which spread over the entire harbour and industrial areas"

In those circumstances I think even James Craig would have welcomed Dev's contribution of fire engines.
 

RedDinger

Old-Salt
A lot of what can be seen in that is slum clearance as already mentioned. But there were places that didn't look a lot different at that time due to PIRA bombing.
This was Ballynahinch after a bombing (which rattled my windows in Lisburn 10 miles away)

default.jpg
 

9.414

War Hero
View attachment 523635
Malin Head, the most northerly point of Ireland. There were several of these around the coast to ward off aircraft from either side. Shame most air raids happened at night.
As the Luftwaffe usually travelled at night they were of no use to them.

The allied pilots had a list of the points and locations and they were helpful navigational points if you were "temporarily displaced". There was an "air corridor" for flights from Fermanagh across Donegall to the Atlantic.

Dead reckoning over open ocean and returning to a coastline and seeing the lookout post "80" sign would be of great assistance to any allied pilot. More info here:

 

wheel

LE
See the bit where the Doctor says the whole town is traumatised? He was absolutely right. I live 20 miles down the road and the whole population of Strabane is still mental.
Is Cinders still knocking about around there. He placed incendiary bombs in a shop (Shiels IIRC) on the ground floor and then went up to the first floor to place some more. Timers all set to go off after x minutes. You can guess the rest.
 
Is Cinders still knocking about around there. He placed incendiary bombs in a shop (Shiels IIRC) on the ground floor and then went up to the first floor to place some more. Timers all set to go off after x minutes. You can guess the rest.
The story I heard about cinders was as follows.
Improvised incendiary comprising of balloons full of petrol hung over the ring of an electric cooker, ring turned on, depart with a nonchalant whistle and cheery gait, several minutes later satisfying whoosh as the petrol ignites

Cinders version, hang balloons over a gas ring, turn on gas ring, depart covered in flames.

I believe that to be true.
 
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