9th November 1989 – The Day The Wall Came Down
In 1989 1LI (the 1st battalion of the Light Infantry) were part of the Berlin brigade and over the period of their posting hundreds of photographs were taken.
The first photograph gives a great view of the wall and of the people crossing over from East Berlin.
1LI were not passive bystanders at this significant moment in history. There are many images showing members of the battalion at refreshment stops handing out good old British tea to East Germans venturing over the wall for the first time. The one I have included shows Private Steve Jones seemingly enjoying his new role as a tea boy.
With the reunification of Germany there was now no longer a reason to continue running the Berlin Military Train which ran between the East and West daily. 1LI provided soldiers for the train guard along with other Berlin units but in late 1990 the last regular service ran with Light Infantry soldiers providing security. Our final image this month shows that train guard commanded by Serjeant Wright at Braunschweig Station with a member of civilian staff.
As with every Notes from the Archive, I am always keen to hear from anyone who can shed any light on the stories and photographs I mention, especially If I have got something wrong.
Don’t forget at the museum we have a large portion of the Berlin Wall on display, voted Cornwall Museums ‘Object Of The Year 2018’!
Our chunk of wall is well worth a visit, if only to marvel at how it was transported to the UK and how staff got it up the stairs!