Blitz 80 Lecture Series

Blitz 80 Lecture Series

The Northern Ireland War Memorial and the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland invite you to a series of presentations to mark the 80th anniversary of the Belfast Blitz.

The Belfast Blitz consisted of four German air raids that took place during the Second World War in April and May 1941. This joint series will explore different facets of the Blitz and showcase archives and artefacts in the possession of PRONI and NIWM.

Belfast’s experience of the Blitz by Dr Brian Barton

Thursday 8th April 2021 at 2:00pm via Zoom

Brian Barton has lectured at the College of Business Studies, Belfast, 1971-1994, tutored in modern history with the Open University, 1995-2013, and was a research fellow at Queen’s and at Churchill College, Cambridge. He has written or edited fourteen books on twentieth century Irish history and politics. His most recent publications include: The Belfast Blitz; the City in the War Years (Ulster Historical Foundation 2105), and The Secret Court Martial Records of the Easter Rising (The History Press, 2010), and he co-authored, with Michael Foy, The Easter Rising (The History Press, 2011). He co-edited with Patrick Roche, and contributed to, The Northern Ireland Question; Perspectives on Nationalism and Unionism (Wordzworth Publishing, 2020). He also contributed chapters on Northern Ireland to A New History of Ireland, Vol. VII, Ireland 1921-1984, produced by the Royal Irish Academy (Oxford University Press, 2003).

This event is taking place on Zoom. Visit the following link to book your place now: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/blitz-80-belfasts-experience-of-the-blitz-tickets-145269532081?aff=ebdssbonlinesearch

The Morning after the Night Before: Emma Duffin’s tour of Blitzed Belfast April 1941 by Trevor Parkhill

Thursday 15th April 2021 at 2:00pm via Zoom

Emma Duffin had served in Egypt and France as a Voluntary Aid Detachment (VAD) nurse in the First World War, during which she kept an extensive diary. She was recruited as VAD Commandant at Stranmillis Military Hospital in the Second World War. She was scheduled to deliver a talk in the Oldpark area on 16th April 1941. Having survived the Easter Tuesday night bombardment and not receiving news that her talk was cancelled, she intrepidly set off, on foot, through extensively damaged north Belfast. This appropriately illustrated talk is based on her measured yet strikingly descriptive diary entries.

Trevor Parkhill MBE retired from NMNI/ Ulster Museum as Keeper of History in 2012, a post he held from 1995. Prior to that he worked in the field of archives, first with the Irish Manuscripts Commission, Dublin and then (1974-1995) in PRONI. His range of publications includes A Nurse in the Belfast Blitz, published (2016) by the NI War Memorial.

This event is taking place on Zoom. Visit the following link to book your place now: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/blitz-80-the-morning-after-the-night-before-tickets-145276934221?aff=ebdssbonlinesearch.

Putting the Pieces Together: Exploring the Blitz through archive images, film and first-hand accounts by Ann Donnelly, Janet Hancock and Jenny Haslett

Thursday 22nd April 2021 at 2:00pm via Zoom

Archivists and heritage experts will discuss and explore some of the artefacts and resources that are available at Northern Ireland Screen, Northern Ireland War Memorial and PRONI. This session will include presentations by:

Ann Donnelly: Access and Outreach Office at Northern Ireland Screen’s Digital Film Archive

Janet Hancock: Deputy Head of Public Services, Public Record Office of Northern Ireland

Jenny Haslett: Museum Manager at the Northern Ireland War Memorial.

This event is taking place on Zoom. Visit the following link to book your place now: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/blitz-80-putting-the-pieces-together-tickets-145278729591?aff=ebdssbonlinesearch.

Faces of the Blitz by Alan Freeburn

Thursday 29th April 2021 at 2:00pm via Zoom

Utilising the collection of the NI War Memorial and never before released images Alan Freeburn will share the personal stories and individual circumstances of those killed during the Luftwaffe Raids in April and May 1941. Alan is the Collections Officer at the NI War Memorial, Talbot Street, Belfast.

This event is taking place on Zoom. Visit the following link to book your place:https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/blitz-80-faces-of-the-blitz-by-alan-freeman-tickets-145280266187?aff=ebdssbonlinesearch.

Hands Across the Border: Assistance from southern fire brigades by Las Fallon

Thursday 6th May 2021 at 2:00pm via Zoom

A look at the roles of southern firefighters in assisting Belfast in the Blitz. Stories from the history of the Dublin Fire Brigade and anecdotes gathered by the speaker from veterans of those events.

Las Fallon, fire service historian and author is a retired firefighter with Dublin Fire Brigade where he worked for 32 years. He is the author of ‘Dublin Fire Brigade and the Irish Revolution’ (2012), ‘The Firemen’s Tale: the burning of the Custom House, 1921’ (2015) and ‘The Great Liberties Whiskey Fire: Dublin’s forgotten calamity of 1875’ (2019). He has written articles for numerous newspapers and magazines including ‘Firecall’ and ‘An Cosantoir’ (the Irish Defence Forces magazine). He has appeared in TV and radio documentaries on aspects of fire service history with RTE, TG4, BBC and various independent producers. He was voluntary curator of the Dublin Fire Brigade Museum from 2008-2011.

This event is taking place on Zoom. Visit the following link to book your place now: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/blitz-80-hands-across-the-border-assistance-from-southern-fire-brigades-tickets-145281537991?aff=ebdssbonlinesearch.

All talks will take place on Zoom at 2pm. Further details can be found on Eventbrite by searching ‘Blitz 80‘.

Registration closes one hour before the event and an invite link will be sent to everyone registered one hour before the beginning of the event.

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