Some close shaves in Pontypool

SOME FORTUNATE ESCAPES

Bus jumps a ditch

On Saturday 18th October 1930 there was another bus accident in Pontypool. It happened at night near Croesyceiliog. The bus was crowded as it travelled along the Straight Mile. As the driver passed a car, the bus swerved, jumped a three foot ditch and crashed into a telegraph pole which tore the side out of the bus. Fortunately no one was killed but some of the passengers were injured: 22-year-old Clarice Dickson of Pontypool sustained a fractured leg, the bus conductor, twenty-eight-year-old Edwin Williams of Blaina suffered from shock, Arthur Thomas Jenkins, twenty-two, of Ponypool suffered lacerations, Stanley Jones, thirty, of Pontnewynydd suffered lacerations and shock. An unidentified girl of about twenty, suffered head injuries but remained conscious and two other girls were detained in hospital.

 

Brave instructor saved member of the Home Guard from grenade explosion

On 5th October 1943, during the war, Private J.Driscoll, a member of the Home Guard was receiving instruction from Sergeant John Bird, a regular army instructor from Blackburn, on how to throw a hand grenade. Live ammunition was being used. Unfortunately with one of the throws a hand grenade fell back into the instruction pit and bounced between the two men. It would explode in four seconds.

Sergeant Bird shouted, dived over the grenade and pushed Driscoll away. Then he flung himself down on the ground. Driscoll ended up a fair distance away from the grenade when it exploded so he was unharmed. Unfortunately Sergeant Bird was burned and was taken to Pontypool Hospital with injuries to his leg and groin.

 

Pontypool boy injured at Bristol Zoo

On 13th July 1945, eleven-year-old Malcolm Bond of 11 Hayden Street, fell from the wall of the ape house at Clifton Zoological Gardens. He had to be taken to the Bristol Royal Infirmary with an injured back.

It’s possible that visitors to this blog might know some of the victims of these accidents. Young Malcolm Bond would now be 78 but it’s an event he would not have forgotten.

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2 Responses to “Some close shaves in Pontypool”

  1. Lionel Bryant Says:

    I remember sitting next to or close to Malcolm when the incident occurred at Bristol Zoo. We were laughing at the Chimpanzees. One of them had suddenly done something quite rude with its hand (involving his backside), which made us roar with laughter, which is when Malcolm fell backwards over the wall. Not too high but enough to injure his back. I’m afraid I don’t remember what happened next, except to feel disappointed to be taken away from the chimps to see something else. I was 7 then. Often thought of that incident but didn’t remember names or dates. Thanks for the memories. The trip was organised by Park Terrace Junior school.
    I remember Mr. Jarvis well. A bit frightened of him in fact but a good teacher. I was sat at the back of the class on one occasion when he threw a book at me which glanced off my head. It was a good long distance throw. Perhaps he didn’t mean to actually make contact? I had obviously tried his patience too much, by talking instead of listening. A bit of a no no for teachers these days but I certainly got the message!

  2. Audrey Ross Says:

    Malcolm lived next door to my aunt in Haydn street and survived the accident. He was my cousin’s best man at his wedding in the late 50’s.

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