Dockhead Bravery

Dockhead is the area of Bermondsey, just East of Tower Bridge, in which Frank worked and was ultimately killed.

There are two other well documented cases of extraordinary bravery, even by the high standards of World War Two, in the same area.

Firewoman Gillian Tanner GM

In World War Two Gillian was in the Auxiliary Fire Service based at Dockhead fire station (the original building was famous for being used as the fictional Blackwall Fire Station in London’s Burning on ITV).

Through the fires of the Blitz, with bombs dropping all around her, she drove a lorry loaded with tins of petrol, which was at huge risk of exploding in the chaos, as she delivered it to the fire engines to keep the pumps running. For her bravery, Gillian was awarded the George Medal. She passed away in 2017.

Image credits: Imperial War Museum, Alamy, Alamy, BBC News, Wikipedia

Albert Heming GC

On 2nd March 1945, a V2 rocket landed on the Priest’s House at Dockhead, trapping several people. Albert Heming was a member of the Light Rescue Squad and spent hours hanging upside down, working to free those entombed in the rubble. He was later decorated with the George Cross, the highest gallantry award for brave actions not in the face of the enemy.