The Fauld Disaster - 27 November 1944


On the morning of Monday 27th November 1944 an enormous explosion rocked the Staffordshire countryside. Near the village of Fauld a whole hilltop, an estimated two million tons of rock and debris, was blasted two thousand feet into the air leaving a crater a quarter of a mile in diameter and one hundred feet in depth.

Deep below the surface some 4,000 tons of bombs stored in the RAF’s largest underground ammunition depot had exploded en-masse, destroying much of the depot, devastating the local
landscape and claiming seventy lives. This was the largest non-nuclear explosion the world has experienced.

The first half of this book looks at the RAF’s national ammunition storage policy, and the depots that were built. The second half explains the chain of events that led up to the disaster at Fauld, describes the moments before and immediately after the explosion in graphic detail, and goes on to give a definitive account of the cause of the catastrophe based upon a forensic examination of the Air Ministry Court of Inquiry records and the subsequent civilian Coroner’s Inquiry.

250 hardbound pages, vast numbers of illustrations, many in colour, including over 200 previously unpublished photographs, maps and plans. An amazing, enthralling and grisly, story.