Marples Hotel Tragedy
Sheffield, vital to British armaments production because of its steel plants, was targeted on the night of December 12 1940 in a raid by 300 German bombers . But navigational errors led to the firebombs and high explosives being rained down on the city centre.
Many in Sheffield 's city centre sought shelter in the substantial cellars beneath the Victorian hotel known as Marples Hotel (after its original owner) on Fitzalan Square. But at 11.44 a direct hit reduced the seven-storey structure to a pile of rubble less than 15 feet high. Seventy died in the cellars, though miraculously seven men were pulled alive from the debris the next day.
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