Robert Bunting

Rank:Fireman AFS (Salford)
Incident Date:23/12/1940
Incident Address.Regent Road - Groves and Whitnall's Brewery
Died Address:Regent Road - Groves and Whitnall's Brewery
Grave Photo:No
Cemetery or Memorial:Salford (Agecroft) Cemetery
Town Memorial:Not Listed
Extra Information:
Born on the 13th December 1907, the birth being
registered during the March quarter 1908 in the
Salford R.D. - ref: 8d/148, the son of Robert &
Janet Bunting (nee Glass).

1911 Census - 33 Essex Street, Salford.   Son -
aged: 3 - born: Salford.   Head of household -
Robert Bunting - Married - aged: 25 - occ:
Labourer - born: Salford.   Also - Janet Bunting -
Wife - aged: 25 - born: Salford.

Married Mary Agnes Richardson during the March
quarter 1932 in the Salford R.D. 

1939 National Registration - 88 Erskin Street,
Manchester.    Robert Bunting - Married - Born on
the 13th December 1907 - occ: Bottler at Groves &
Whitney Brewery.   Mary A. Bunting - Married -
Born on the 22nd August 1907 - occ: Shop Keeper. 
Subsequently resided at 3 Hartley Grove, Higher

On Sunday evening 22nd December, 1940, during a
heavy air attack on the Manchester District, a
large bomb exploded in Wilburn Street, adjoining
the brewery, and seriously damaged the cooperage,
the cask washing plant and buildings and garage.
The blast also destroyed all the cottages in
Wilburn Street owned by the company, a crowded
area of two acres, and blew off the roof of part
of the main buildings. There was no loss of life
in the brewery itself, At 7.30pm on the following
evening, 23rd December, a landmine, dropped by
parachute, hit the factory offices. Nothing was
left of that fine range of buildings, or the older
part of the Globe Works, except a great crater and
a pile of debris strewn across Regent Road.

Mrs. Bentley, the caretaker, who lived above the
offices and had refused to move out of Manchester,
lost her life at her post, as did Bunting, a
member of the Globe Works fire brigade.   Fire
followed the main explosion and the debris
smouldered for more than a week.   Regent Road was
impassable for three days.   Fortunately the
concrete and steel wing of the Globe Works, built
in 1939, withstood the shock, thus saving most of
the bottling plant and machinery.   Incendiary
bombs, however struck this building and the
adjoining Wine and Spirit Stores, starting many
fires, all of which were put out by the Globe
Works Fire Brigade, who stuck to their task until
well into the following day preventing still
greater loss.

On both nights of the Blitz the large "C" cellar
beneath the garages had been thrown open to the
public and formed a shelter for several hundred
people from Wilburn Street, Lyth Street and
surrounding districts. The majority of these
families had their homes totally destroyed, but
suffered few casualties owing to the shelter
Groves and Whitnall were able to offer them. A
difficult problem caused by the destruction of the
offices, was the loss of most of the then current
books and records. Many of these were eventually
recovered from the debris over a period of several
weeks. Some, however, were totally destroyed and
others badly damaged.

The Company were eventually able to find new
offices at 274 Deansgate, but it took many months
of painstaking work to decipher the remains of the
damaged records and to build up any missing

CWGC - Fireman, A.F.S. Husband of Mary A. Bunting,
of 3 Hartley Grove, Higher Irlam. Died at Grove
and Whitnalls Brewery, Regent Road.

Commemorated in Volume 1 of the book - "Two Towns
go to War" by Pete Thomas & Neil Drum.

Salford (City of Salford)
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