The organisers of the Liverpool Blitz 70! event invited all Liverpool’s veterans of Her Majesty’s Armed Forces to walk alongside veterans of the Blitz on Merseyside on the morning of Saturday 30th April to mark the 70th anniversary of the May Blitz. Our objective was to bring the old and the young together in memory of those who lost their lives on the Home Front in 1940 and 1941.
“A generation which ignores history has no past and no future.” – Robert Heinlein
All photographs courtesy of Victoria Phipps Photography
The City of Liverpool Pipe and Drums Band led the contingent through Liverpool City Centre.
Crowds gathered to watch as veterans and dignitaries prepared to lay wreaths in memory of those lost during the Blitz on Merseyside.
A minutes silence was observed at 11am and broken by the sound of the air raid siren ‘all clear‘; a sound which will have brought back memories for so many.
The Lord Mayor of Liverpool, the Mayor of Wirral, Chindit veteran George Main and Normandy veteran Albert Dillow all laid wreaths to honour those who lost their lives 70 years ago. George Main lost friends and was injured during a bomb raid on Liverpool and was taken to Clatterbridge for treatment.
Liverpool veteran, Craig Lumberg, lost his sight during the Iraq conflict. He was proud to lay a wreath in memory of the Blitz casualties of his hometown.
WWII veteran Larry Taylor laid a wreath on behalf of the Royal Air Force Association Northwest.
Comedian Stan Boardman laid a wreath in particular memory of his older brother, Tommy, who was killed whilst the family were sheltering during an air raid on the Wirral.
Mary and James McCartney met in Liverpool during an air raid in 1940… she was a nurse & midwife and he worked as an inspector at an engineering works which manufactured shell cases. He also volunteered as a fireman by night. They married in April 1941 and had two sons shortly after: Paul and Michael. If it hadn’t been for the Blitz they might never have met and the course of music history might have been dramatically different. So on the 70th anniversary of the May Blitz, Mike McCartney laid a wreath on behalf of both McCartney boys.
Derek Herbert concluded the opening ceremony by addressing the veterans and reciting an extract from Winston Churchill’s famous VE Day speech…