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15 October 2014
WW2 - People's War

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Where is the Missing Bomb?

by BBC Southern Counties Radio

Contributed by 
BBC Southern Counties Radio
People in story: 
Mary Lentz (nee Jackman)
Location of story: 
Bedford
Background to story: 
Civilian
Article ID: 
A4390058
Contributed on: 
07 July 2005

One morning I was on my way to Clapham Road Infants’ School in Bedford. I think I was about seven years old. It was in 1941. I think I was late for school and it was probably around 9.15. a.m. as I was walking up the side of the infants’ building alone when I heard a big explosion and turned around. I saw sticks flying into the air due south of where I was. Later I was told that the Royal County Theatre had been bombed which was on Midland Road very near the railway station. I walked on past the classroom and as I turned the corner I saw a plane in the sky right in front of me. A kind of black sack fell from it and I couldn’t think what it was. I think it must have fallen into the fields along Clapham Road beyond St Martin's Church where the horses grazed. The plane disappeared into a cloud. As I went into school, the sirens started and the teacher told us we had to go immediately to the bomb shelter in the far top corner of the playground. I was terrified to cross the playground because I thought the plane was still up there and in the middle of the playground the lid fell off my round yellow gasmask tin. It was spinning and I panicked and stopped to try and pick it up. The others went on and I was left alone and even more scared, feeling so exposed. Eventually I got to the shelter and went inside. No more bombs fell but I’ve always wondered if that bomb that I saw had dropped into a field and is maybe still buried there.

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