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Showing posts from November, 2018

Armistice Centenary

The eleventh day of the eleventh month of 1918 has been commemorated this week on its hundredth anniversary. This week's post takes a look at some of the most notable burials in our collection from the First World War.

Silvertown Explosion 1917 (West Ham Cemetery, London E7)
One of the worst non-military disasters of the First World War took place near the cemetery in Silvertown, East London. On 19 January 1917, the largest explosion ever to occur in the UK ripped through the former Brunner Mond factory in Silvertown. It had been turned over to munitions production near the beginning of the war, and now manufactured highly unstable TNT. The blast was heard as far away as Southampton and Norwich. A devastating firestorm spread beyond the factory into neighbouring streets, destroying or damaging more than 900 homes.
The human cost was high, with over 70 deaths. 390 people were injured. Several of the 73 victims of the Silvertown disaster, including firemen Sub-Officer Henry Vickers an…