City’s wartime ‘heroes’ to be revealed in archive project

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THE stoicism and courage of Hull’s wartime civilian population are to finally be recognised in a new archive project.

Although the city’s suffering during the Second World War received scant attention at the time – it was referred to as a “North East town” during contemporary reports of bombing raids to hide its strategic importance – it was the most bombed UK city outside of London, and the accounts of what happened are now to be revealed.

The city’s wartime archives, which, excluding photographs, would cover more than 350ft if laid out in a straight line, are to be catalogued and prepared for public viewing for the first time.

The Hull History Centre project is being financed by a grant of almost £30,000 from the National Cataloguing Grants Programme 2011, and will see an archivist appointed for a year.

The records, covering the emergency services, civil gallantry awards, town architects, clerks, treasury, engineers and other departments, survived the war in a vault at the Guildhall, which was relatively unscathed apart from a hit on the ballroom.

The centre’s access and collections manager, Carol Tanner, who will oversee the project, said: “Some of the material is amazing. I think it’s time that Hull’s heroes were really given the credit they deserve.”