In memory of those who lost their lives when a bomb penetrated the Columbia Market air raid shelter, 7 September 1940. (45 names) Also in memory of those who died through their wounds after 7 September 1940.
A debt of honour - The Memorial Gates
This memorial was inaugurated by Her Majesty the Queen during the Golden Jubilee year, 2002. It commemorates the service and sacrifices of five million men and women from the Indian Sub-continent, Africa and the Caribbean, who volunteered to fight with the British in the two World Wars, 1914-18 and 1939-45. This is the first time that their magnificent contribution has received fitting recognition. With so many descendants of these volunteers now living in the United Kingdom, the Memorial Gates serve to remind us all of our shared sacrifices in times of greatest need.
First World War, 1914-18
Indian Sub-continent and the Kingdom of Nepal - 1,440,500 men and women, including 100,000 Gurkhas, volunteered for military service in the Indian Army. They fought on the Western Front, in Gallipoli, Persia, Egypt, Palestine and Mesopotamia.
Africa - the old British African colonies provided 62,000 troops and transport auxiliaries who fought in Africa.
Caribbean - over 15,000 men served in the British West Indies Regiment and saw action in France, Palestine, Egypt and Italy.
Second World War, 1939-45
Indian Sub-Continent and the Kingdom of Nepal - over 2,500,000 including 132,000 Gurkhas, served in Burma, Malaya, Hong Kong, North and East Africa, France, Italy, Greece and throughout the Middle East.
Africa - over 372,000, mostly from East and West Africa, served in the Middle East, East Africa, Italy and Burma.
Caribbean - over 7,000 men and women volunteered to aid the war effort, many of whom saw action in the Middle East, Far East, East Africa and Italy.
The Memorial Gates have been funded by a National Lottery grant from the Millennium Commission and the generous support of trusts, foundations and members of the public.
This panel was donated by the Friends of War Memorials and the West Indian Ex-Services Association UK.
Memorial Gates Trust
[a plaque used to be on the railings and read:] R.N.V.R Memorial Trophy This Trophy was unveiled on the 6th June 1931 by H.R.H. the Prince of Wales K.G. to commemorate the service of R.N.V.R. Officers and men in the Great War including 125,000 Officers and men who were trained for all branches of the Royal Navy at the Training Depot. HMS Victory VI at the Crystal Palace 1914-1918. The trophy was damaged during the/ 1935-1945 War and was restored in 1955 through the generosity of past and present members of the R.N.V.R. and their friends
Nortraship From 1940 to 1945 this building housed NORTRASHIP - The Norwegian Shipping and Trade Mission - established by the Norwegian Government in exile and Norwegian shipowners. NORTRASHIP operated the Norwegian merchant fleet of more than 1000 ships which made a vital contribution to the allied victory in World War II.
This panel was added to commemorate the 29,924 of all ranks of the Royal Artillery who gave their lives for their King and country in all parts of the world during the war of 1939 - 1945. They died with the faith that the future of all mankind would benefit by their sacrifice. Quo fas et gloria ducunt
In memory of the Ukrainian Canadians who served their country overseas during the Second World War.
This building housed the headquarters of the Ukrainian Canadian Servicemen's Association from January 1943 to the war's end, of the Central Ukrainian Relief Bureau from September 1945 to the winter of 1948, and of the Association of Ukrainians in Great Britain from January 1946 to the spring of 1947. Ukrainian-Canadian relief operations continued in Europe until 1952.
Placed by the Ukrainian communities of Canada and Great Britain, 19 September 1995.
This memorial honours the commitment of Australians who served alongside Britain and her allies in defence of freedom in the First and Second World Wars. The battle sites are representative of the many places where Australians, together with their comrades, fought and died. The place names record the origins of Australian servicemen and women many of whom were born in the United Kingdom and elsewhere. Each is a reminder of the impact of war on families and communities. The flow of water over these names evokes memories of service, suffering and sacrifice. Tonkin Zulaikha Greer-Architects Janet Laurence-Artist
The Bethnal Green Tube Shelter Disaster On 3 March 1943 the air raid warning sounded at 8:17pm. People made their way in the pitch dark of the blackout to file in an orderly manner down the steps of the single entrance to the unfinished Bethnal Green underground station next to this memorial. It had been in regular use since 1940 as a deep air raid shelter. Over the next 10 minutes local pubs and cinemas emptied so that some 2,000 people were already in the shelter by 8.27 pm when the searchlight went on. Those still waiting to enter were alarmed by the deafening sound of a new anti-aircraft rocket battery opening fire for the first time nearby. They assumed it to be enemy bombs falling. At that time three buses set down their passengers at the unsupervised shelter entrance. The crowd hurried down the poorly-lit 10 foot wide first flight of 19 concrete steps which had no central handrail. On this wet, slippery stairway a woman with a child fell on the third step from the bottom and others tumbled over her. The crowd above continued pressing forward unable to see the horror of what was happening below. Within seconds the whole staircase was a solid, tangled mass of 300 people trapped five or six deep. Despite heroic efforts, rescuers working above and below found it difficult to release them before they suffocated in the crush. It was 11.40 pm before the last of the total 173 dead was pulled out - 84 women, 62 children and 27 men. Sixty-two people were hospitalised and at least 30 more walked away wounded. Many more suffered life-long trauma. This was the worst civilian disaster of the Second World War.
Site of the worst civilian disaster of the second world war In memory of 173 men, women and children who lost their lives on the evening of Wednesday 3rd March 1943 descending these steps to Bethnal Green Underground air raid shelter Not forgotten