Blitz hero buries past

Never forget: The Moor's time capsule is lowered into its new home during the ceremony.
Never forget: The Moor's time capsule is lowered into its new home during the ceremony.
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A HERO former firefighter, who was on duty during the World War Two air raids which devastated Sheffield, has buried the past – to make sure future generations never forget.

Doug Lightning, thought to be the last surviving fireman from the time of the Luftwaffe attacks, was guest of honour as The Moor celebrated its rise from bombsite to bustling shopping street.

It was one of the worst-hit areas in the nine-hour raid in December, 1940, with stores such as Atkinsons, Redgates and Roberts Brothers completely flattened.

The 94-year-old entertained crowds with his sweet voice before burying a time capsule – filled with interviews with survivors, photos and artefacts documenting the history of the area – underneath footpath paving.

The material was brought together through a local history project led by author Neil Anderson, working with survivors, local history enthusiasts and schoolchildren as part of the 72nd anniversary of the Sheffield Blitz.

Neil said: “Many described the scene on The Moor as a holocaust in the aftermath of the Blitz and bomb damage remained for many years.

“There’s no doubt it was the unwavering spirit of Sheffield people that helped get The Moor and the rest of the city back on its feet.”

The 30-litre barrel used for the capsule also contained 12 items chosen by 12 schools from across the city.

Karen Wood, school enterprise champion at Sheffield Council, said: “It contains children’s reflections on The Moor and Sheffield as it is today.”