First World War Zeppelin raids in Bury St Edmunds are finally marked

Blue plaque to commemorate the Zeppelin raids in Bury St Edmunds, Denny Bros. Unveiling by Mayor Pat

Blue plaque to commemorate the Zeppelin raids in Bury St Edmunds, Denny Bros. Unveiling by Mayor Patrick Chung. - Credit: Gregg Brown

A plaque has been unveiled in Bury St Edmunds to mark two Zeppelin raids on the town during the First World War.

Blue plaque to commemorate the Zeppelin raids in Bury St Edmunds, Denny Bros. Unveiling by Mayor Pat

Blue plaque to commemorate the Zeppelin raids in Bury St Edmunds, Denny Bros. Unveiling by Mayor Patrick Chung. - Credit: Gregg Brown

The only victim of the first attack, on April, 30, 1915, was a dog, but seven people were killed a year later in 1916. They were: Henry Adams, George Kimberly Adams, Annie Evelyn Dureall, James Dureall, Catherine Dureall, Private Hubert Hardiment and Harry Frost.

Yesterday, an event was held to officially launch the new blue plaque, which is on the wall of what is now Denny Bros in St Andrew’s Street South, one of the buildings which was bombed.

Those who attended the occasion included Martyn Taylor, heritage officer at the Bury Society who organised the plaque, Mayor of St Edmundsbury Patrick Chung and relatives of the Dureall family.

Colin Jamieson, who is from Milton Keynes, lost his grandmother Annie Dureall in the 1916 attack, as well as two of her children (his aunt and uncle), Catherine and James.

Evelyn, Mr Jamieson’s mother, survived the raid on the family home on March 31, 1916, but lost her sight, which she regained after six months.

Mr Jamieson said it meant a lot to finally have public recognition of the devastating raids. “It’s very poignant, really,” he said.

He said through getting recognition at Bury Cemetery for his grandmother’s death he had been reunited with his cousin Frances Dureall, who was also at yesterday’s event.

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He said: “I came over last year to find my grandmother’s grave and it wasn’t marked – I couldn’t find it at Bury Cemetery – and I just rang up Armstrong Funeral Services and they agreed to put a marker on it for nothing because of the story.

“And Frances, my cousin, saw the marker on the grave and wondered who had put it on there and contacted the undertakers and found me. And we got in contact after 55 years.”

Mr Taylor said with no public acknowledgement of the raids Dennys had kindly agreed for a blue plaque to be placed on the building, the former stables of James Pettitt.

The plaque now joins seven others placed around the town by the Bury Society in 2012.

Karen Hurden, former chairman of the Bury Society, said: “The blue plaques are the history, visible history, for people. We think it’s a brilliant thing to do.”

Mr Chung said it was important to mark the raids so everyone could remember them.