Plaque: Wandsworth Fire Station - stone plaque 2
In memory of Fireman B. Trussell who died on duty 21st May 1981.
The report in the glazed stand contain this text:
Barry Trussell died a month after a fire in the Intensive Care Unit of Tooting’s St Georges Hospital. The fire started at 1.45am in the early hours of Monday 27th April 1981, and it took 45 firemen nearly an hour to put out the blaze, which destroyed the storeroom. Four patients from the Intensive Care Unit and 20 others from two nearby wards, including a children’s ward, had to be evacuated as firemen struggled to contain the blaze. There was a sudden flash explosion in the storeroom, which buried Barry Trussell, and he was removed to the special burns unit of Queen Mary’s Hospital, Roehampton with severe burns to his hands and face. Barry died a month later, and left a wife, Gillian (24) and a four month old baby daughter Karen. Police suspected the work of an arsonist.
Site: Wandsworth Fire Station (3 memorials)
SW18, West Hill
This memorial originally comprised the two low marble plaques with the display stand between and a rather nice little fountain behind. On the day we visited the fountain was not playing. The plastic terracotta plant pots are a recent unhappy addition. The plaque on the wall behind is also more recent. The glazed stand contains a newspaper article and a report, The Firemens' Stones, produced by the GLC Fire Brigade on the two incidents commemorated on the marble plaques. We wonder how long they pondered before putting the apostrophe in the wrong place. The report starts:
"The memorial stones outside this station were placed here by the Wandsworth Fire Service Old Comrades Association in commemoration of their colleagues who have been killed whilst on duty."
We have transcribed the relevant sections of that report onto the pages with the photos of the two stone plaques.
The right side of the building carries a foundation stone: "London County Council, Fire Brigade Committee, 24th October 1956, Richard Coppock CBE Chairman".
(It might be fixed by the time you look, but at the time of writing (Nov 2011) GoogleMaps map view and satellite view are seriously out of sync in the area around this memorial.)