Bombs dropped in the ward of: Grange
Total number of bombs dropped from 7th October 1940 to 6th June 1941 in Grange:
- High Explosive Bomb
- Parachute Mine
Number of bombs dropped during the week of 7th October 1940 to 14th of October:
No bombs were registered in this area
Number of bombs dropped during the first 24h of the Blitz:
Memories in Grange
Read people's stories relating to this area:
Contributed originally by littlebylittle (BBC WW2 People's War)
With my sister Pat, I was a witness to one of the first German V2 rocket attacks on London and, with it, one of the many small miracles of WW2.
In the autumn of 1944, as a boy of nine, I used to go with my 12-year old sister Pat to take our baby sister Jill, then 2, in her pushchair to Bentry School, a local council-run pre-school day centre in Dagenham before ourselves going on to school. Our parents started work early, mum at Hipperson's timber yard in Dagenham and dad as a manual worker for Dagenham Borough Council.
We were well accustomed to air-raids and V1 'doodle-bug' raids as we lived in a prime target area. However, there was no air-raid warning given out on that particular morning. It was a fine, calm day, with a heavy dew on the ground.
On any previous morning the infants would have been left to play in the school playground until the official starting time of seven a.m. but on this occasion the children were taken into the building as soon as they arrived. There were three nurses on duty and one of them told us to take Jill into the school straight away. We turned to walk back through the grounds towards Heathway, the main road.
Pat clearly remembers looking back and admiring the straight parallel tracks made in the dew on the grass by the wheels of the now-empty pushchair. Then there was a tremendous explosion. We stared around at a scene of devastation all around us. Rubble was everywhere; doors hung off buildings, windows were shattered. A column of thick black smoke, containing slowly-swirling debris, which included a whole wooden door, rose straight up from the edge of the playground up into the clear sky.
People were running around, some talking of sabotage or 'clock bombs'. We hadn't heard about V2 rockets until after then.
At home afterwards we never talked about the bomb. It was 50 years before I asked my mother about it. With 3 of her 4 small children involved, it must have been horrendous for her.
'It was,' she said simply.
The explosion was clearly heard at the timber yard about a mile away where she worked. The column of smoke and debris could be seen rising above the roofs of the council houses.
Word came through that the infants day centre had been bombed. Mothers ran from work and raced along Oxlow Lane to the scene.
By a miracle, no-one was killed. Mum soon found Jill, who was unhurt, at the school, but Pat and I were unaccounted for. We weren't at the school, and hadn't got home.
After the blast, we didn't go back to find Jill. Insstead, we walked, shocked, away from the scene, and were later found wandering through the rubble-strewn side-streets, pushing the empty pushchair. We were picked up by a cruising ambulance and taken to a casualty centre.
The episode has had its effects on me. I'm still afraid of sudden loud bangs. But, in a way, I don't mind. It reminds me, after all these years, of the time when a miracle spared the lives of so many innocents.