Hampton's, Pall Mall SW1

16 November 1940

By Kaitlyn Hanson

Hampton’s (8-11 Pall Mall East), at the corner of Whitcomb Street and Pall Mall Street SW1, was hit by a high explosive bomb at around 2.20 am on 16 November 1940.

Hampton’s - a furnishings business founded in the 1860s, adjacent to the National Gallery - was severely damaged. Fire completely ravaged the interior and its blackened facade was "partially demolished". No casualties were inflicted.

Field Marshal Lord Alanbrooke, (Commander-in-Chief of Home Forces) strolled from his quarters in the nearby Army and Navy Club, off Pall Mall, to see the results. He recorded his impressions in his diary that same evening:

"Hamptons caught fire and burned merrily most of the night with noisy arrival of fire engines. I got up to look out of the window; it was a weird sight looking east to see the end of the street one blaze of flames and made it hard to realize that this was London in 1940!' (Field Marshal Lord Alanbrooke, diary entry 16 November 1940, War Diaries 1939-1945, 1957).

The Hampton's bombsite was left vacant after the war, then became a car park and was finally redeveloped as the Sainsbury Wing of the National Gallery (1991).

Photo:ARP Bomb Damage Report, Hampton's, 16 November 1940

ARP Bomb Damage Report, Hampton's, 16 November 1940

Copyright Westminster City Archives

Photo:ARP Permanent Record Book, Hampton's, 16 November 1940

ARP Permanent Record Book, Hampton's, 16 November 1940

Copyright Westminster City Archives

Photo:ARP Permanent Record Book, Hampton's, 16 November 1940

ARP Permanent Record Book, Hampton's, 16 November 1940

Copyright Westminster City Archives

Hamptons, 8-11 Pall Mall East W1

This page was added by Kaitlyn Hanson on 26/04/2014.

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