Bombings

On October 1st, 1940 a 1,200lb bomb fell on 5 Charlbury Grove but failed to explode and was not defused until early December.

The most severe damage however occurred at twenty-five minutes past nine in the evening of October 7th when a high explosive bomb fell between the Priory Church and the gym, wrecking the organ chamber and damaging the War Memorial Chapel. Another bomb fell through the roof of the church but failed to explode. This one was of the delayed action bombs but the local authorities had more pressing priorities than to defuse a bomb lying in an empty church.

The area was cordoned off and it finally exploded at six o’clock the following morning. It blew up the entire East end of the Priory Church, turning the sanctuary and the choir into a single crater filled with roof and debris. All except two stained glass windows were blown out, the west window was warped by the blast and two or three bays, shaken by the explosion, seemed likely to be demolished.