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Information from Ken Brawn, 2023
Irchester bomb

The devastation
The devastation caused at 20 Farndish Road

On the 19th May 1941, Mary Smart had arranged to go and stay with her aunt, Phyllis May White (née Furness). At the very last minute Mary’s mother, Lily Smart (née Furness), said she couldn’t go. When Mary asked why, Lily replied, “I just have a funny feeling and I don’t want you to go.”

In the early hours of the next day, a stray German Bomber dropped 4 bombs on Irchester, two landing in Farndish Road. Only one exploded, at the junction with East Street and directly in front of number twenty. The bomb fractured a gas main and it was concluded that six adults and three children, including Phyllis and her son Colin, were not killed directly by the blast but succumbed to the effects of gas whilst trapped under the rubble.

Is it fate that Phyllis shared the same 8th July birth date with her father Robert Furness who was killed by the Germans in May of World War One and she was killed by them in May of World War Two? Her Uncle William's wife, Emma had been killed by a bomb at Rushden 6 months earlier.

Phyllis White Phyllis with Colin
Phyllis on her wedding day
and with son Colin

All who died are buried in Irchester cemetery and at the 50th anniversary in 1991, a plaque was placed on the village war memorial.

at the war memorial
Irchester War Memorial - Lower Plaque

Another Plaque commemorating them was erected in 2021 by the Irchester Parish Historical Society, on the house behind the War Memorial.


80 Year Memorial - On the
house behind the Irchester War Memorial

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