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> Aberfan anniversary, 50th anniversary of mining disaster
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post Oct 21 2016, 11:07 AM
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Fifty years ago today a massive mountain of waste in the mining village of Aberfan in south Wales collapsed, destroying many buildings in its path. Among those buildings was the local school in which over 100 children died. In total, 116 children and 28 adults were killed.

It happened at 9:15 in the morning. If it had been an hour earlier, the children would still have been at home. The following week was half-term so, again, the school would have been empty.

In the wake of the tragedy, the public (both in the UK and abroad) donated £1.5m. That’s almost £30m in today’s money. However, no amount of money could ever change the fact that a village had lost so many children.

It was just a few weeks after my sixth birthday. I can remember being aware that something terrible had happened and that it involved children of about my age. It is the earliest news story that I can remember being aware of, but it was only some years later that I realised the full scale of the disaster.

There have been events in Wales today to mark the anniversary. A minute’s silence will be observed at some Welsh football grounds over the weekend.

A former Daily Express journalist who covered the story (it was her first major assignment) has published to letter she wrote to her mother after the weekend. Be warned - you may find it extremely upsetting.
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post Oct 21 2016, 02:35 PM
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Mrs Brayden Smith <333
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The Aberfan disaster sounds absolutely horrific, that Daily Express journalist letter from the time was a particularly chilling read. I also watched an interview earlier with the last survivor pulled out of the rubble which was a pretty sad watch. All of those poor poor kids (and adults too ofc). sad.gif Such terrible timing in terms of the school being engulfed, as you say if only it had been an hour earlier or a week later.

Good to see that the victims were being remembered today all these years later with silences. Couldn't even begin to imagine how scary this must have been to witness on the news at the time.
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post Oct 21 2016, 02:40 PM
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The first news event that shocked me as a child, i was the same age as the kids who died, and the way they died was nightmarish to me.

These days the organisation responsible and the people making insane decisions would be prosecuted.
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post Oct 21 2016, 03:29 PM
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Mr Jade Lauren Williams <333
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This is the first time I've heard about this somehow, absolutely horrifying! The survivors' guilt must be awful.
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post Oct 22 2016, 06:43 AM
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QUOTE(Bré @ Oct 21 2016, 03:29 PM) *
This is the first time I've heard about this somehow, absolutely horrifying! The survivors' guilt must be awful.

There is also the guilt of parents whose kids were saying "I don't want to go to school!" who told them they had to go to school anyway and then their children died in the disaster.

To summarise, a horrific disaster, and I just hope nothing like that ever happens again.
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