A FILM student has captured powerful memories of the Barrow Blitz for a documentary to mark its 75th anniversary. 

Matthew Dodd, 18, of Barrow Sixth Form College, interviewed people on camera who lived through the Blitz of April and May 1941.

The Barrow Blitz: 75 Years On, is part of his A-Level coursework. 

The moving historical record charts the effect of the bombings on the community and features photos and footage from the North West Film Archive. 

Matthew said it had been a great experience and he’d met some fascinating people. 

He said: “I’d always been interested in the Second World War but I’ve learnt so much more from talking to people than in the history books. 

"It was a real honour to listen to people’s stories and to get chance to record their memories for future generations.

“I’m really happy these stories will not be forgotten.”

Ann Tunn described how her father would never use the communal air raid shelter in town but something changed his mind on May 9. 

“They lived in Newland Street and that night the whole street was totally flattened. If the family had stayed they would not have survived,” Matthew said. 

Derek Lyon, a former long-serving chairman of governors of the college, recalled how he sheltered under his pharmacist father’s workbench in Hartington Street when the bombs hit. Matthew also carried out interviews at Trinity Church, including organist Ella Sharp, who died recently. She was a 17-year-old money counter in the shipyard during the strikes. 

Matthew said: “She said when the air raid siren went off she wasn’t allowed to leave the building because she had to stay with the money. She was so down to earth, her interview was very funny too, and I'm sure it'll make people laugh, she had a good sense of humour.” 

Other interviews include Joan Cowan, Muriel Wakefield, Alan Garnett, Ron Turner, Lilian Wookey and historian Bryn Trescatheric. 

Matthew braved the top of Barrow Town Hall to secure footage and toured the cemetery with historian Rod White to hear about those killed in the Blitz. The documentary will be narrated by Graham Cubbin of the Dock Museum.

Matthew, who plans to study film production at Salford University, said the 30-minute documentary will be kept in the North West Film Archive. 

He will screen the film at college and would like to hear from schools who would like to watch it. School can contact the college on 01229 828377.