On Saturday 22nd June, IGMT are hosting a 1940’s themed event at Blist’s Hill Victorian Town, and as part of those celebrations the archaeology department are going to be running a World Wars guided walk through the Severn Gorge which will visit a range of sites from war memorials to the wing shop at Coalbrookdale, and the sites of numerous near misses including the time they nearly blew up the Ironbridge. I’m actually going to be leading this walk, so in preparation I thought I ought to do a bit of research. Now of course in most cases this would involve a day in the library or even a detailed internet search, however, with a subject such as this the best facts are to be gathered from those that lived through the events and remember first hand what Ironbridge was like during the wars, and events that took place.
So yesterday afternoon I met with Ron Miles for precisely that reason. Ron is in his early 80s and is still a guide here at IMGT. He grew up here in the Gorge and has some absolutley fantastic memories from the time of World War II. He’s fascinating to listen to and has some wonderful stories that he’s more than happy to share. He also knows the geography of the area better than most, so took me off to visit some second world war related archaeology including an series of anti-convoy defences. As a result I’ve got some great material for my walk and have learnt so much.
If you’re interested in taking part in my walk, places are limited so make sure you book with me via the contact me box on this website. Big thanks to Ron for all his help on this.