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Official Unveiling Of Cwmparc Blitz Memorial

Written by on 22nd March 2022

Rhondda Cynon Taf Council is supporting the official opening and unveiling of the Cwmparc Blitz Memorial, remembering those who tragically died during the Second World War bombing on the area.

A special open-air memorial service and unveiling ceremony will take place in Cwmparc. Rhondda, on Saturday, April 30, at 1pm. The public are welcome to attend.

Among those who will be attending the unveiling of the Cwmparc Memorial will be bombing survivor and retired welder Meirion John, now aged 82. He was too young to remember the tragic attack but still has childhood memories of the Second World War.

Meirion John, who was born and raised in Cwmparc before moving to Treorchy, said:

“I was just two-and-a-half years old when Cwmparc was bombed in 1941, too young to have any recollection of that fateful night. But I can still remember certain parts of the Second World War – for example, the sound of the air raid sirens is something that has never left me.

“My parents used to pull the dining table up against the window and then the settee up against that until the aircraft had gone overhead and the sirens stopped. Being a close-knit community, my family knew all of those people who died during the bombing raid on Cwmparc.

“The Cwmparc Blitz Memorial is something that we can all be proud of. That tragic night is a huge chapter in our history and I am delighted to see this memorial being unveiled in my lifetime.”

Mr John is a member of the committee of the Cwmparc Blitz Memorial Project, which has been community-led throughout, with the support of Rhondda Cynon Taf Council. The memorial, situated on land off Park Road, Cwmparc, is not only dedicated to those who died during the bombing, but also all other servicemen and women from the area who died fighting for their country in the two World Wars and other conflicts.

On April 29, 1941, the close-knit communities of Cwmparc and Treorchy were subjected to a bombing raid by the German Luftwaffe, which saw 27 people killed. It was described at the time as the single biggest loss of life in the Rhondda Valley during the Second World War, where children from all over the country were sent as part of evacuation of big towns and cities. The youngest person to be killed was just 18 months old.

Councillor Maureen Webber, Rhondda Cynon Taf Council Deputy Leader and Armed Forces Champion, said:

“This Council is proud of its strong links with its Armed Forces community across the County Borough and is delighted to support the Cwmparc Blitz Memorial Project.

“So many people lost their lives in Cwmparc on that dreadful night at a time and a place where they thought they were safe, sleeping soundly in their beds at home.

“This close-knit community was rocked that night, a night that is cemented into our history books. A night during which many innocent lives were lost. We will always remember them.

“The Cwmparc Blitz Memorial is a fitting tribute to these people and the Council sends its condolences to the community and to those who lost loved ones. This will be a lasting memorial to them and to all others from the local community who lost their lives during the two world wars and other conflicts around the world.”