History

Local Councillor: Wartime explosion in Paull

Councillor Ann Suggit

Councillor Ann Suggit

ANN SUGGIT is well-known in the area as an East Riding Councillor and advocate of Hedon and the villages in South West Holderness. What is probably not so well-known, is the fact that Ann was caught up in a wartime incident in Paull that could have had tragic consequences for all those involved.

It was wartime 1943, and over 60 barrage balloons were moored across the Humber to deter the German Luftwaffe from attacking. On April 7th one of these balloons escaped its mooring in a storm and crashed near the Paull School; the ensuing explosion blew in the school windows showering the 42 pupils inside with debris and dust.

Miraculously none of the children were seriously injured. But one of the few suffering minor injuries was Ann; she got glass embedded in her hand and still has the scar to prove it!

Those involved in the incident had a reunion last Saturday at the Paull Village Hall and Ann was there to share her memories of the incident and other wartime reminiscences. Surprisingly, despite the traumatic circumstances which had reunited people, the reunion was a very jolly event with people sharing fond memories. But in a chilling reminder of what might have been, Ray Garbutt one of the organisers of the event, said: “If it were not for the grace of God Almighty – then none of us would be here today.”

Those involved did indeed have a lucky escape!

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