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Published 14 March 2019

A plaque honouring the crew of a Polish warship who helped see off enemy fighters during the Clydebank Blitz has been unveiled.

The ORP Piorun was docked at the John Brown Shipyard for repairs on 13 March 1941 when the town was subjected to one of the most brutal attacks of World War II.

Over two days, the men on board played a vital role in defending Clydebank.

As part of marking the 78th anniversary of the Blitz, Councillors agreed to have the plaque installed to commemorate the men.

The plaque, which is located at the Clyde shore near the Titan Crane, was unveiled as part of a series of memorial events.

Provost William Hendrie was joined by Michał Zawisza, Vice Consul at the Consulate General of the Republic of Poland, as well as other elected members and invited guests as he unveiled the tribute, which reads: “Dedicated to the crew of the ORP Piorun in defence of Clydebank during the Clydebank Blitz, 13 March 1941.”

Provost Hendrie said: “Unveiling the plaque on behalf of the people of Clydebank and West Dunbartonshire to commemorate the crew of the ORP Piorun was such a privilege.

“We will be forever indebted to these men, who kept their guns firing on enemy aircraft over two nights, and helped prevent the total obliteration of Clydebank.”

Earlier that day, elected members, Armed Forces personnel, local citizens and other invited guests gathered at the Blitz Memorial located in Dalnottar Cemetery for an emotional service.

Afterwards, they laid wreathes at Solidarity Plaza, honouring those who lost their lives.

Provost Hendrie added: "The Clydebank Blitz is one of the most devastating events to have happened to West Dunbartonshire, and it's still in living memory.

“We lost so many of our citizens over those two days, and it’s hard to comprehend what life must have been like for those who survived.

“Our annual memorial services are always very emotional, but it is important to honour those who were killed as well as those who helped to rebuild the town of Clydebank.”