How Calderdale is remembering Halifax's World War II bombing victims

A new plaque commemorating the people affected by the Hanson Lane bombing during World War Two has been unveiled in Hanson Lane Memorial Garden, Halifax.

The plaque unveiling ceremony
The plaque unveiling ceremony

On November 22, 1940 a bomb fell outside 77 Hanson Lane, next to Crossley Terrace.

In a densely-populated area with streets of terraced houses, the impacts were devastating. Eleven people tragically lost their lives, ten others needed hospital treatment and well over 500 properties were damaged.

Calderdale Council funded and designed the plaque after the local community expressed its desire for a lasting tribute.

Historic images of the bomb damage

The Council’s Halifax Central Initiative team worked with Councillors and residents from Park Ward Neighbourhood Forum and local historian David Glover to create the new plaque, which the Mayor of Calderdale, Councillor Marcus Thompson unveiled.

Amongst the attendees were Ward Councillors and local residents, including Mrs Joan Hay who lived in the area at the time of the 1940 bomb and remembers the incident.

The ceremony was especially poignant for Coun Thomspon, whose grandfather owned Thompson’s Butchers on Hanson Lane. Eric ‘Sapho’ Pearson, the 16-year-old boy who worked there, was sadly killed by the bomb whilst waiting for the bus home after his shift.

Coun Thomspon said: “It was an honour, and very emotional for me, to unveil this new plaque. We know how important it is to the local community to highlight this historic event, which caused pain and suffering in Halifax, and to remember everyone who lost their lives.”

Historic images of the bomb damage

Hanson Lane Memorial Garden was created on the site of some terraced houses, which were never rebuilt, with the intention of remembering those who lost their lives as a result of the 1940 bomb.

The new plaque includes a list of the 11 people who tragically lost their lives, images of the severely damaged buildings and details of the bomb’s impacts.

The plaque is part of a wider partnership project to celebrate and raise awareness of local heritage in Park Ward.