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mbriscoe

1922 explosion in Tipton

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mbriscoe

We have been discussing this on another site after someone posted images of the memorial.

 

!9 teenage girls killed in 1922 explosion at Dudley Port.

 

In 1922 John Knowles for a contract to extract the metal from ammunition.  He had visited another factory where women did the work with a couple of people only in each room, rubber shoes on wooden floors, asbestos aprons.

 

He decided to maximise his profits so used 14 year old girls mainly, a few 15 and at least one 13 year old.  They were all working in one room with a concrete floor that had iron strips, the gunpowder was only swept up once a day.  And there was a stove with no protection.

 

The inevitable happened and 19 girls were killed.

 

This newspaper article explains the story.

 

Knowles got 5 years in prison, he appealed the sentence but I don't think he got it reduced.

 

The Explosives Bill of 1923 was prompted by the case but eleven girls were killed in 1924 whilst dismantling Verey pistol ammunition.

 

 

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Chris_Baker

Some previous discussion about this:

 

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mbriscoe

Thanks, I did a quick search but missed that.

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