The Unlikely Deaths of Gordon Strange and Alan Tucker 15th November 1940 - Sheffield City Hall

The first article is from the Manchester Guardian dated 16th Novemeber 1940

Taken at face value, the report initially states that the "gun exploded" but later in the same paragraph "it went off accidentally." The two statements are not compatible. But at the inquest that was held on 27th November 1940, twelve days after the tragedy all became clear

The Guardian reported on 28th November 1940


The Yorkshire Post and Leeds Mercury dated 28th November 1940 also carried a report of the inquest into the deaths and the circumstances surrounding them 

Negligence on the part of the sergeants, inadequate supervision by the officers and the use of live anti-tank rounds seem to me to indicate that some of those involved should have at least been prosecuted for what can only be described as wanton recklessness. Where there may not be enough evidence to pursue a charge of manslaughter, I think that the case certainly warranted the prosecution of those involved in the deaths of Gordon and Alan (and also the injuries to the other three members of the public).

I cannot find the location of Alan's burial/cremation but Gordon is buried in Sheffield's Shiregreen Cemetery

STRANGE, Gordon (Son of Ernest, age 14).
Died at The Royal Hospital; Buried on November 20, 1940 in Consecrated ground;
Grave Number 393, Section A of Shiregreen Cemetery, Sheffield.
Name: Gordon Strange
Birth Date: abt 1926
Date of Registration: Dec 1940
Age at Death: 14
Registration district: Sheffield Inferred County: Yorkshire West Riding Volume: 9c Page: 712

Gordon is also mentioned in his school magazine


The whole School has been deeply shocked this Term by the tragic death of Gordon Strange, of Form Va. As Patrol Leader of the Falcon Patrol of the Scouts, Strange, with other Scouts of the School Troop, was helping on 15th November at an Exhibition held in connection with the Sheffield War Weapons Week, when he was fatally injured by the accidental firing of a gun. Strange was one of the ablest boys of his age on the Classical Side, and those who taught him were confident that he would have a brilliant career. As a Scout, he had shown equally notable powers of leader­ship and his good humour and readiness to help others had earned him the respect and affection of his fellows. He had many friends among Masters and boys, especially in the Classical Fifth and Arundel House, and all of them will join in mourning his untimely death.

One very sad incident occurred in 1941. Gordon Strange, a member of the KES Scout Troop was on duty at a War Weapons Week Exhibition at the City Hall in Barkers Pool. He happened to be standing in front of a large calibre anti-tank rifle as it was being demonstrated. Unfortunately a live round had been left in the breech and Gordon was killed instantly.

The only other information is that Gordon Strange (14). lived on Hartley Brook Road with his parents.Ernest and Doris,and Alan Raymond Tucker who was an architect's assistant, lived on Sheffield Road, Woodhouae. Sheffield. If anyone can supply any further information please contact me


The Manchester Guardian dated 16th November 1940

The Manchester Guardian dated 28th November 1940

The Yorkshire Post and Leeds Mercury dated 28th November 1940

The Sheffield Indexers

King Edward V11 School Magazine

Commonwealth War Graves Commission

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This page was last updated on 14/03/15 17:34