Candles lit in memory of those who died in Lowestoft First World War bombardment

An event was held to mark the centenary of the bombardment of Lowestoft during the First World War.

An event was held to mark the centenary of the bombardment of Lowestoft during the First World War. Historian Bob Collis with four candles lit in memory of each of the victims. - Credit: Archant

Candles were lit in memory of the four people who died in the bombardment of Lowestoft on the centenary of the First World War raid.

An event was held to mark the centenary of the bombardment of Lowestoft during the First World War.

An event was held to mark the centenary of the bombardment of Lowestoft during the First World War. - Credit: Archant

A commemorative event was held at the Lord Kitchener Holiday Memorial Centre in Lowestoft on Monday (April 25) – 100 years to the day that the German Lutzow and Derfflinger ships shelled the town from the sea.

Historian Bob Collis gave a presentation to about 50 people on how the raid killed four people, with three of those being in a house in Sandringham Road, where a shell smashed through the building.

The names of each of those who died – William Hollis, Anne Davy, Sidney Davy and eight-month-old Robert Mumford – were read out by fellow historian Chris Brooks, before a candle was lit in memory of each.

Mr Collis said: 'I don't think we could've found a more appropriate place to hold it than the memorial centre.


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'It is important to try and educate people. Still a lot of people are unaware of the fact Lowestoft was attacked by the Germans in both world wars, let alone bombarded from air and sea in the First World War.

'As the cliché goes, those people are ignorant of of history are doomed to repeat its mistakes. It's important that we don't lose touch with the fact four people lost their lives.'

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Mr Collis told of how the bombardment was a 'shattering experience for Lowestoft', with many people leaving temporarily for fear of further attacks.

However compared to places like Hartlepool, which came under similar attacks killing about 100 people, Mr Collis said: 'It could've been an awful lot worse.'

Forty homes were destroyed and 200 damaged in the 20-minute raid, with the firing starting at 4am.

The attack led to more pill boxes built along the coast and batteries of field guns positioned in Corton and Pakefield, to defend the town.

But despite having earlier been attacked in zeppelin raids, the Germans did not return during the First World War.

An exhibition was also held at the commemoration event, showing photos of the damage caused.

Proceeds are to be split between the Lord Kitchener Holiday Memorial Centre and the Lowestoft Armed Forces Day Committee.

Have you got a story for our Turning Back the Clock page? Tell The Journal by calling 01502 525820 or email lowestoft.journal@archant.co.uk

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