At the time of the bombing I was 15 years old, working a 48-hour six-day week as a Telegraph Messenger in Dublin. A daily 40-minute meal relief was included in these hours. My duty hours were 6am to 2pm and 11am to 7pm on alternate days.
As we lived just a mile from the North Strand, and three quarters of a mile from North Richmond Street, we had heard the bombs falling. The first explosion wakened my brother and myself. As the other bombs signalled their approach with a very load whine, we took cover near a solid wall in our house – we were very clued in. By the time the last bomb fell, our local air warden was calling to houses to reassure people.
I reported for duty in the telegram delivery room in Princes Street at 6am. I cannot recall if it was my first batch of telegrams, but very soon I had a bundle of telegrams for the North Strand area. I think most of these were probably from relatives working in the UK – jobs were scarce in Dublin at the time. The North Strand area was cordoned off, but as a uniformed telegraph messenger I was allowed to pass. Sadly, I was unable to deliver even one of my telegrams; every house for which I had a message was rubble. It was said that the North Strand explosion was a “Landmine”.
I have seen no mention of the bomb damage on the North Circular Road opposite O’Connell’s School, presumably from the North Richmond Street bomb, but I clearly recall very serious damage there.