75 years ago : Memorial unveiled to commemorate 23 people killed during bombing raid on Rolls-Royce

75 years ago, 23 people aged from 2 to 62 were killed in a bombing raid on the Rolls-Royce plant on Nightingale Road. Largely forgotten to the people of Derby, a memorial has now been laid, which fittingly remembers those who fell. On the anniversary of the attack, the formal unveiling was attended by many dignitaries, local Councillors, members of the Community, and old colleagues.

As Cllr Baggy Shanker highlighted in his opening speech, the memorial initiative resulted from partnership working in the community:

“So leading up to today OSCAR (Osmaston Community Association of Residents) and a number of partners including Derby Homes, the City Council, Derby Connect, Rolls-Royce Heritage Centre and the local Primary School have worked together to preserve and promote the industrial heritage of Osmaston, and with a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund we have delivered Creative Workshops and displays involving local children, School workshops, History Boards, and a heritage guide produced by the local community. And of course the Memorial, which is why we’re here today.”

Peter Felix and Peter Kirk of the Derbyshire Historical Aviation Society provided a detailed account of the bombing raid, and painted the picture of events of that day 75 years ago, and the route taken by the German bomber, and how it made its way out of the City. More details can be read HERE

The Mayor of Derby, read out the roll call of names of the 23 who were killed.

Anton Rippon, from the Derby Telegraph, poignantly personalised the tragedy

“Sylvia Farmer would be 77 now. Dennis Regan would be 84. Doreen Jenkins might well be celebrating her 91st year. There would no doubt be children, and grandchildren, and maybe great-grandchildren. There would be old school friends, and neighbours, and work colleagues, whose lives Sylvia, and Dennis, and Doreen would have touched over the years.
But it wasn’t to be”

The unveiling of the plaque was followed by a formal blessing from the Bishop of Derby, the last post, and a minute’s silence.

Flowers were laid by the attendees at the base of the memorial, and PC Karl Webster, performed “The Sunset Fanfare” .


People gathered, chatted, met old acquaintances and enjoyed the occasion of people from across the community uniting on such an historical and important day to remember these 23 citizens of Derby.


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1 reply »

  1. Very very nice…..these two gentlemen iconic to Derbyshire shaped my whole interest in aviation along with my dad….lived opposite to Mr Felix and enjoyed many aviation trips and Mr Kirk took me on my first flight …amazing guys and a true credit to Derby

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