Old Dagenham map shows two other phosphorous bombs were found close to this week’s discovery
- Credit: Archant
This map shows where two phosphorous bombs were uncovered after World War II, just metres away from the spot where “smoking” remnants of a third were discovered last week.
The map, probably produced in the immediate post-war era, shows where bombs that fell on Dagenham between 1940 and 1945 were found and removed.
As reported on our front page last week, dozens of families were evacuated on Monday after “smoking” bits of a phosphorous bomb dropped in 1940 were uncovered by workers digging up Temple Avenue, in Dagenham.
Police initially feared it was an unexploded bomb but it turned out to just be remnants and not dangerous. It is thought the smoke was caused by the phosphorous reacting with the oxygen in the air.
After the scare, staff at Valence House looked at the bombing map and found that two unexploded phospherous were recovered, either during or just after the war ended, near the spot in Temple Avenue.
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Valence House’s borough archivist Tahlia Coombs said: “When the Germans were bombing they would often drop a series of bombs in a line, so it is not surprising that there were more than the one found last week.”
She added: “The map is very interesting, you can see the different type of bombs that were dropped and it also tells you if they exploded or not.
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“Most of those dropped were found and removed in the post war period, but some were missed, which means every now again one will be uncovered, especially when people are digging up the ground.”
Valence House Museum has a number of old incendiary remains on display, and a piece of rope from a parachute bomb that landed in the area. Because of the mineral’s highly reactive nature it does not keep any phosphorous bombs in its collection.
Did you or your family live in or near Temple Avenue during World War II? Call 020 8477 3893 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.