Thursday, 7 February 2013

Descendants mark Eastbourne fire station bombing

Descendants of a survivor of a WWII bombing raid which destroyed an East Sussex fire station have attended a service to mark its 70th anniversary.

The bomb which fell on Eastbourne Fire Station on Sunday 7 February 1943 killed six firefighters but two, Charlie Payne and Eddie Guy, survived.

Mr Payne's son, Don, attended the service with his granddaughter, Emmy Bastin, a fire service employee.

It was held on the site of the old fire station in Grove Road.

'Pay respects'

Mr Payne and Mr Guy, who were both seriously injured, were buried in the fire station rubble for two hours before they were rescued.

"It was a harrowing event for my great granddad and it seems fitting that I should be there to support my granddad and to pay my respects," said Ms Bastin, who is a health and safety officer with East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service.

Joan Bennett, who worked at fire service control in 1943, will also be among those at the service.

The site of the old fire station is marked by a commemorative plaque.

Many other homes and businesses were also hit in the bombing raid, which killed a total of 15 people and injured 72.

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