Community urged to share previously untold memories of the Blitz

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Community urged to share previously untold memories of the Blitz

Jewish Military Association calls on those who witnessed the bombing campaign against Britain 80 years ago to tell their stories for the first time

Jenni Frazer is a freelance journalist

A young woman still smiling after being rescued from a London building just wrecked by a bomb dropped by a daylight German Luftwaffe raid.
A young woman still smiling after being rescued from a London building just wrecked by a bomb dropped by a daylight German Luftwaffe raid.

AJEX, the Jewish Military Association for the UK, has asked all of its 1600-strong members for their memories of the Blitz, whose 80th anniversary is being marked between now and May next year.

For eight long months, London and other major British cities were bombed on a nightly basis by the German Luftwaffe.

Some recollections were published by the Jewish News last week, prompting reader and local historian Nigel Grizzard to get in touch.  

He said that more than 2,000 Jews were victims of the Blitz, but wondered why there was no national memorial to them.

There is a small plaque in a church in Epping, recalling eight women who were killed when a maternity home was bombed — and three of those women were Jewish. 

Plaque to Blitz victims

But there is no separate memorial to Jewish Blitz victims. Mike Bluestone, chairman of AJEX, said that since education was one of the organisation’s three pillars, his board felt it was important to support an initiative to remember those civilians who died between September 1940 and May 1941. “Many of our members were either children at the time, or had friends or relatives who were killed in a Blitz bombing”.

Jewish News hopes it will be possible to put up a plaque in remembrance of the almost forgotten victims of the Blitz. Suggestions for locations are welcome.

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