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New film reveals how Sunderland survived the Blitz

WRECKED STREET: A scene from May 16, 1943, in Atkinson Road and Rosedale Terrace Corner when a parachute mine was dropped and 10 people were killed.

WRECKED STREET: A scene from May 16, 1943, in Atkinson Road and Rosedale Terrace Corner when a parachute mine was dropped and 10 people were killed.

A FILM documenting Wearside’s recovery from the devastating air strikes of the Blitz has been released.

The DVD, compiled by historians, includes images and footage captured after the Second World War bombings in Sunderland, showing where buildings were attacked and illustrating how many people where killed or injured.

The scenes include an air raid in March 1941, when high explosive bombs were dropped on William Street, Roxburgh Street and Francis Street in Fulwell, leading to the death of four people as well as leaving two seriously injured and 10 others hurt.

Another strike in April the same year, which gutted the Binns store and caused the town hall to catch fire, left a shoe warehouse wrecked and Sunderland Club damaged by fire.

Later that month, 18 people were killed – including five at Sunderland Forge and Engineering Co – with a further 36 badly hurt and 79 injured.

That strike also left 300 people homeless.

John Dawson, one of the historians who worked on the DVD, said: “There is just too much to mention but the content is huge.

“The Lufftwaffe brought terror, wiping out many areas in Sunderland and South Shields.

“Gas and water supplies ceased to function and many families were bombed out with nowhere to go.

“People faced the carnage of war with extraordinary courage and resilience as did the rest of the country.”

The Sixtownships DVD also shows how people tackled the fires started by the bombs, and how the dead bodies and the seriously injured were removed from the wreckage as well as how Weasiders returned home after the strikes to salvage what they could.

The DVD can be bought online via www.sixtownships.org.uk and is £5.99.

 

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