Saturday, 15 December 2012

New ....... the Chorlton bomb maps of 1940

It’s what I like about history. Out of nowhere forgotten and tucked away for decades comes a wonderful find that sheds light on the past.  

So along with many I was totally captured by the news that during the renovation of Central Ref a comprehensive set of maps has been found of the bombing of Manchester in 1940.  What is more it is now on line.*

And even more interesting is that not only does it cover the city centre but the surrounding areas including Chorlton.

Using the OS for 1933 the Corporation plotted the bomb hits, with red circles for fire bombs, blue for high explosives, pink shading for damaged buildings, and red for demolished buildings as well as green marks for land mines.

Now I had known that Chorlton had taken some hits.  There is anecdotal evidence as well as at least one site map for the area around the station, a few pictures and what can be gleaned from the odd bit of infill building suggesting new properties which replaced destroyed ones.

But the extent of the blue and red circles in Chorlton is surprising even given the fact that we were on the route to and from Trafford Park, the docks and city centre.

Like lots of people armed with the maps I will be exploring the impact of that bombing.  And it comes at a timely moment since I was recently contacted by someone who has memories of the bombing around Whalley Range.

Picture; bomb damage at Nell Lane, 1940, courtesy of Manchester Libraries, Information and Archives, Manchester City Council, m09736



  1. I cannot find any information or record of the bomb that dropped on the garden of number 40 St Werburghs Rd at Christmas 1940, [ 1941 ? ] killing the resident Mrs Jones as she started her duty as a fire warden

  2. You could try a trawl of the MEN obituaries held at Central Ref. I know that the book Luftwaffe over Manchester, Peter J C Smith 2003 had a database of all those kicked in Manchester.