Sunday 17 December 2017

'A huge wall of flames towered to the sky'

Voices from The Rising

Oscar Traynor
Oscar Traynor

REBEL fighters at the Imperial Hotel and the GPO later gave these accounts of the destruction of Sackville Street to the Bureau of Military History.

As far as I can remember, the shells started late on Wednesday. They were shrapnel shells, and the amazing thing was that instead of bullets coming in it was molten lead...which streamed about on the ground as it fell
- Oscar Traynor, GPO

In my simplicity I took up the phone to speak to the Fire Brigade...I was told they intended to let us burn out - Kevin McCabe, Imperial Hotel outpost

The fire continued to approach on us and we were virtually beaten out of the upper portion of Clery's and the Imperial Hotel...we remained until the ceiling of the first floor was falling all around us in flames and then retreated
- Frank Thornton, Imperial Hotel outpost

The Imperial Hotel went on fire and the men had to evacuate. The method they adopted was that they wrapped themselves round with big mattresses and ran across the street
- Eamon Bulfin, GPO

The fires had now extended from Clery's right down to Hopkins' Corner [Eden Quay]...a huge wall of flames towering to the sky and great billows of smoke. The noise of bursting shells and tumbling walls and roofs was indescribable
- Frank Burke, GPO

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