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Sharing Your Memories

“Our Dublin of today is very much a product of past experiences and a sharing of our history is very important to Dublin today.”
Lord Mayor of Dublin, Councillor Eibhlin Byrne.

On the night of 30-31 May 1941 four high explosive bombs were dropped by German aircraft on the North Strand, killing 28, injuring over 90, and destroying 300 houses.

Were you an eyewitness to these events? Or perhaps you have stories or anecdotes, which have been passed on to you by older friends or relatives? Your memories are history. Dublin City Archives wishes to collect and preserve them for future generations of Dubliners. Add your experiences to the history of the North Strand Bombing by submitting your story using the submission form below or alternatively by e-mail to

Your submission can be as long or as short as you wish.

Stories submitted to Dublin City Archives may be edited before being published on the website. We will not publish any of your personal details.  See our privacy statement below.

Please include the following information:-

Name – Email – Telephone – Your Story

Story Submission Form:

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Privacy Statement

If you contribute a story to this site we ask you to give us your name and contact information. This is so that we can contact you in the event of a problem with your story and to record that you are the copyright owner of the story. We will not publish your name on the site without your express permission and we will not share the information you give us with any third party


Devastation in the North Strand

Dublin City Council Historian in Residence Dr. Mary Muldowney and historian Catherine Holmes tell the story of the bombing of North Strand on the night of 30/31 May 1941, an event that traumatised several generations and changed the shape of one of the city’s oldest neighbourhoods.

Mary Muldowney’s talk gives the background to the tragedy and outline its aftermath, referring in particular to the memories and photographs featured on this website.

Catherine Holmes draws on firsthand accounts of the night of the bombing from the Dublin City Archives oral history project to illustrate the dreadful impact on the lives of those living and working in the North Strand area.

This special event to mark the 80th anniversary of the bombing was hosted by Charleville Mall Library on 31 May 2021.


Personal Stories

Pádraig’s story

I was born on 17th March 1941 so I was about two and a half months old when the North Strand was bombed. We lived in 3 Waterloo Avenue which is the cul-de-sac just beside the Church of Ireland and School on the North Strand. We were about 600 Meters away from the point of impact. My parents had been hearing the various aircraft over the city for probably about an hour and a half. At one point my father went to the hall door with me in his arms to look out to see what was going on with what would have been the one remaining aircraft. Just as he did so the bomb dropped and of course shook the house and did some ceiling damage. I think that being downhill from Newcomen Bridge reduced the effect on our house depite our relative proximity. So I am a witness and survivor. For all my years of going to school at North William St and St Canices and O’Connell School on NCR I walked across what we called “the Bombed area” a bumpy packed clay expanse with lumps of stones protruding and with very little growing on it.

Personal Stories

The Browne Family’s Story

The Browne family were all killed on the night of the 31 May when the bombs fell on the North Strand. Harry Browne had gone out to join the Local Defence Services after the first bombs fell that night. At around 2am, when he heard the German plane return, he decided to rush home to be with his family. He got as far as the door before a bomb detonated on the street- his body was found with the knocker of the door in his hand. His wife, mother and four children were all killed in the blast. In this interview, below, Harry’s niece, Thelma McGlinchey, and her brother-in-law, Sean Dunne, speak about the tragedy.

Marc McMenamin’s report on RTE’s The History show on the North Strand Bombing also tells the story of the Browne family.

Listen to the Browne Family story:



North Strand Bombing: 75th Anniversary Commemoration at Charleville Mall Library, 31 May 2016


On the night of 30-31 May 1941 four bombs were dropped by German aircraft on the North Strand area of Dublin, killing 28, injuring over 90, and destroying 300 houses. To commemorate the 75th Anniversary of this tragedy, a special event will be held at Charleville Mall Library on 31 May 2016 at 2.30 pm.  Historian and archivist of St John Ambulance Brigade Pádraig Allen will outline how the Brigade who were on duty coped with the injured and dying in North Strand, drawing on previously unseen records from the St. John Ambulance Brigade archive.   The North Strand Bombing Exhibition devised by Dublin City Archives will be on display and extracts from the Dublin City Archives Oral History Project with survivors of the bombing will also be played.

All welcome Booking advised:

Personal Stories

The morning after, by Joe Brennan

North Strand Road 153 to 164


It had been a balmy summers evening, the Friday  of the Whit  Weekend.   We were playing football on Sandymount beach, and my team were not impressed about my departure.  I walked home and was sent sent straight to bed before 9 o’clock, so as to be bright and cheerful for my very special day  tomorrow.  My mother woke me at 6.15 –  2 hours earlier than originally  scheduled!   She explained she had been awake all night with the noise of our windows shaking from what she thought was an earthquake.  But upon listening to the first  radio news bulletin of the day at 6.00  a.m. she learned that bombs had been dropped on the North Strand, 7 kms from us.  The date was 31st May, 1941 –   the day of my First Holy Communion.